Cerebrovascular Disease and Stroke
Eisenhower Neuroscience Institute’s Neurovascular Team diagnoses, treats, and provides ongoing management for cerebrovascular diseases. Cerebrovascular disease refers to conditions that affect blood vessels and circulation in the brain. Problems with blood flow occur due to:
- Stenosis, when blood vessels narrow, restricting blood flow
- Thrombosis, the formation of a thrombus, or blood clot, in a blood vessel that reduces blood flow
- Embolism, the blockage of a major artery by a blood clot, air bubble, speck of body fat, or other substance which becomes stuck in a blood vessel and obstructs blood flow
- Hemorrhage, the rupture of a blood vessel, causing bleeding in the brain
A cerebral aneurysm (also known as a brain aneurysm) is a weak spot in an artery that bulges out and fills with blood. While aneurysms often have no symptoms and may go undetected for decades, they can cause serious problems. If a bulging aneurysm puts pressure on a nerve or on brain tissue, it can cause symptoms like paralysis on one side of the face, a dilated pupil, pain around the eye, or vision changes. If a cerebral aneurysm ruptures, it will bleed into the brain. A ruptured aneurysm is an emergency medical condition that can lead to hemorrhagic stroke, brain damage, and coma, and is potentially fatal.
An arteriovenous malformation (AVM) is an abnormal tangle of blood vessels that connects arteries and veins, disrupting blood flow and the circulation of oxygen. In addition to reducing the amount of oxygen available to the brain tissue that surround them, AVMs can weaken and rupture, causing a brain bleed.
Cavernous malformations are clusters of abnormally formed blood vessels located in the brain or spinal cord. They may leak blood, causing dangerous hemorrhages.
The Eisenhower Health Stroke Team offers comprehensive stroke care to all stroke patients. A multidisciplinary team approach ensures the best possible care of patients throughout the process. Patients receive their initial treatment in the Emergency Department, where the Stroke Activation Process begins. Testing and diagnosis are followed up with the highest quality of inpatient treatment. Click here to learn more about our Stroke Center.
- Ischemic stroke: The most common type of stroke, ischemic stroke occurs when a blood clot or a piece of plaque narrows or blocks off an artery leading to the brain.
- Transient ischemic attack (TIA):Sometimes called a “mini stroke,” a transient ischemic attack is temporary blockage of blood flow to the brain – usually five minutes or less. However, a TIA should be considered a warning sign that a person is at risk for a future stroke.
- Hemorrhagic stroke: A hemorrhagic stroke, or cerebral hemorrhage, refers to bleeding in the brain from a ruptured aneurysm.