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Stroke – Computed Tomography Angiography

February 13, 2022


Sometimes an MRI isn’t possible or for some reason the MRI is inadequate. So in those cases we’ll use something called a CT angiogram. A CT angiogram is where they actually inject dye into your arm and move you through a CT scan. A CT scan is again is that big donut. It’s very fast. It’s probably a two to five minute study and basically as they’re injecting the dye, they can see that dye move through your arteries and you move through that scanner as a dye moves through you. The last thing is something called the carotid ultrasound. The carotid ultrasound, you know you’ve got four pipes, so the carotid ultrasounds really sees the carotids very, very well. But the other arteries you don’t see as well. So the carotid ultrasound can sometimes be a little bit limited and something we use to augment the other studies that we’ve had done. Beyond that we’ll often be checking lab work, like I said earlier. So we’re checking cholesterol screens. Again, paying very careful attention to your total cholesterol, the bad cholesterol called an LDL. We can get your blood sugars and those are the main tests that we’re going to be ordering. The other things that sort of expect in the hospital, and these are actually very important parts of your hospitalization, are going to be rehab after someone has a stroke and they’ve got some deficits we know that sort of, my analogy is is that your brain is like the roots of a tree. Okay. If there’s an area of damage, your brain cells are like roots. There are around there. And what they’ll do is if you stimulate them, they’ll grow around that area that they can’t get water from anymore. They’ll grow around that injury and they’ll make up for it. But the key to doing that is early Rehab, early therapy, early exercise. So in the hospital, one of the most important things that we do is we get physical therapy, speech therapy, occupational therapy involved depending on someone’s deficits from the stroke, and then try to get them into some type of rehab situation where they can continue to improve afterwards. So in summary, when someone comes into the hospital, one expect things to move really fast because time is of the essence. Number two, you’re going to get a variety of scans all looking at sort of what’s the cause of the stroke? Looking at your heart, looking at the arteries, and really carefully looking at the brain. And lastly, but frankly, most importantly is going to be the rehab aspect of your treatment.

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