A spinal stroke or spinal cord stroke occurs when the blood supply to your spinal cord is cut off and the spinal cord can’t get oxygen and nutrients. The stroke is much less common than strokes that affect your brain. If the nerves can’t get enough nutrients and oxygen.
Symptoms of spinal stroke
Spinal cord stroke depends on how much damage is done to the spinal cord. It has many symptoms such as:
- The weakness of leg muscles
- The feeling of tightness around the torso
- Legs muscle weakness
- Inability to feel the temperature
- Muscle spasms
- The problem of controlling bowel and bladder
- Difficulty moving
- Breathing difficulty
- Arm pain
- Nausea after eating
Causes of spinal stroke
It occurs when the blood supply to your spinal cord is cut off. But most of the time it is a result of a narrowing of the blood vessel that supplies blood to your spinal cord. The arteries of your body narrow and also weakens as you age. But a spinal stroke has many causes such as:
- High blood pressure level
- High cholesterol level
- Heart disease
- Obesity to morbid obesity
- High blood sugar level or diabetes
- Lack of physical exercise
- Too much smoking
- Drinking alcohol
- Unhealthy food consumption
People who drink alcohol in huge amount regularly, smoke regularly, also have heart disease (heart failure, heart attack), are at high risk of spinal cord stroke. All these factors play an important role to increase the chances of your stroke.
High blood pressure and high cholesterol levels help to damage and weaken your blood vessels and also increases the chances of rupture and bleed.
Research has shown that spinal stroke also has many other causes that are not so serious but can cause your spinal stroke. So here are the other causes of stroke of the spinal cord such as:
- Vascular malformations of the spine
- Deep injury
- Spinal cord compression
- Hurt surgery
- Abdominal surgery
- Spinal tuberculosis
All these factors also play a vital role to increase your chances of spinal stroke.
Diagnosis for spinal stroke
If you are experiencing any symptoms of the stroke of your spinal cord then you should take an appointment with your doctor. Your doctor will ask about your medical history and perform a physical exam. Your doctor will find out a health problem on the basis of your symptoms.
Also, your doctor likely takes a magnetic resonance imaging scan, commonly known as MRI. Also, MRI helps to confirm the presence and location of your blockage or bleed.
If someone is experiencing any symptoms of stoke of the spinal cord, then he/she should seek medical help right away. It can be a serious life-threatening alert for you. Your doctor may try to prevent and treat the symptoms of your diseases. The treatment of your stroke totally depends on the actual cause of your disease.
Your doctor may give you some medicines to prevent the risk of blood clots. Your doctor may suggest antiplatelet and anticoagulant drugs such as aspirin and warfarin. Blood clots are normal but the formation of blood clots deeply can cause various deadly diseases such as brain stroke, lungs blood clots, kidney failure and more.
The doctor also may give you some medication to lower your high blood pressure and cholesterol level.
Physical therapy or occupational therapy may be required to prevent the problem of paralysis. Physical therapy helps to preserve the function of your muscles.
If your spinal cord stroke is because of tumor then corticosteroids are used to reduce the swelling. The tumor will be removed by the surgery process.
Spinal cord stroke has many risk factors such that can be very dangerous such as:
- Shortness of breath
- Permanent paralysis
- Problems during sex (sex dysfunction)
- Bladder incontinence
- Joint and muscle pain
- Muscle loss and muscle strain
- PTSD (post-traumatic stress disorder)
To prevent the spinal cord stroke you need to follow some steps for good health such as:
- Exercise regularly in the morning for at least 45 minutes. You can do yoga or aerobics such as biking, cycling, swimming, soft weight lifting, running, walking and more that will help you to prevent the risk of your stroke. It is always a healthy habit to workout properly. Also, it helps to relax your muscles in your body.
- Try to quit drinking alcohol. Alcohol is loaded with sugar and has no protein and fiber that are very unhealthy for you. Also, alcohol is very high in calories.
- Try to quit smoking also. It can increase many diseases of your lungs by damaging the airways.
- Always maintain your healthy weight. Try to avoid obesity or morbid obesity. A healthy weight keeps your heart healthy and also helps to maintain blood sugar normal.
- Also, maintain a healthy diet plan that helps to boost immunity. A healthy diet plan needs to contain heart-healthy foods and also diabetes healthy diet. Make sure your diet is loaded with green vegetables (tomatoes, onion, broccoli, sweet potatoes, kale, and spinach), fruits (apples, grapes, orange), dried fruits, egg white and also grains (whole wheat and oats).
It is wrong to say that the disease is not preventable or curable. Many people with spinal stroke can recover completely. But the paralysis may last for a few weeks.