Transient Ischemic Attack (TIA)
Transient ischemic attacks (TIAs) are sometimes referred to as warning strokes or “mini strokes”. Different than a stroke, TIAs do not cause permanent brain damage. TIA symptoms last less than 24 hours, and often less than one hour. However, about one-third of people who experience a TIA will likely suffer a stroke during the following year.
If you experience a TIA, it means an artery is suddenly blocked briefly. For a short period of time, blood can’t reach a part of your brain. TIA symptoms vary based on the part of the brain that is affected.
In addition to the common stroke risk factors, what are unique risk factors for a TIA?
- Carotid artery stenosis – the carotid arteries are the main blood vessels that carry blood and oxygen to your brain. These arteries can become narrowed by fat and lipid buildup (a condition called atherosclerosis), decreasing oxygen flow to your brain. If the narrowing or your carotid arteries is severe, blood is unable to reach your brain. This can result in a TIA or even a stroke.
What are the symptoms of a TIA?
TIA symptoms resemble the signs of a stroke.
- Sudden numbness in your face, arm or leg, especially on one side of the body
- Sudden confusion
- Sudden trouble seeing, talking or understanding
- Sudden trouble with balance or walking
- Sudden dizziness or loss of coordination
- Sudden severe headache you can’t explain
- Loss of consciousness or seizure
If you suspect you or a loved one is having a
stroke get medical help immediately. Call 911.