What Will a Neurologist Do if You Are Having a Stroke?

Posted on: 23 July 2020

Stroke doctors are neurologists who work in many different hospitals and through locum tenens programs to ensure that proper care is provided to patients when they experience a stroke. And this care is considered emergency medicine that is implemented quickly and precisely. To find out about the things that will happen in a timely manner, keep reading. 

CT Scan

The first thing that will happen when you visit an emergency care or stroke center is the completion of imagery. This is essential to diagnose the stroke and to figure out what kind of condition it is. Specifically, your neurologist will want to know whether you are experiencing a hemorrhagic, transient ischemic attack, or an ischemic stroke. CT scans are often completed within about 30 to 60 minutes of when you arrive at the medical center. The scan is one completed without contrast and the images are assessed quickly for any abnormalities. In some cases, the stroke may not appear for a few hours after the stroke has occurred. For this reason, your doctor may choose to complete an MRI after the CT scan. Once the stroke is identified and diagnosed, the stroke doctor can provide treatment. If a TIA is noted, no direct treatment will be provided beyond supportive care. This type of stroke is one with symptoms that will disappear quickly and without any long-lasting effects. While this is true, a transient stroke indicates that a more serious stroke may occur in the future. Medicines, like anticoagulants, will be prescribed to prevent this from happening.

TPA Administration

If you are diagnosed with an ischemic stroke, this means that you have a blood clot in the brain that is blocking blood flow. This clot must be removed or tissues within the brain will start to die off due to the reduction in oxygen. To dissolve the clot, your physician will administer a medication called Alteplase which is a tissue plasminogen activator (TPA). This medication can work quickly, but it must be given as an IV infusion with three to four and a half hours of the onset of your stroke. 

Also, before the medication can be administered, your doctor will need to ensure that it can be given safely. So, you will be asked a great deal of questions about your present and past health issues. Having a loved one with you to help answer these questions is wise due to the confusion and communication issues that are common with a stroke. A locum tenens stroke doctor in your area can help answer any other questions you might have.