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The Comprehensive Stroke Center at University Hospital

What is Stroke


A stroke or “brain attack” occurs when there is a sudden blockage of blood flow to the brain (ischemic), or when a blood vessel in the brain bursts, spilling out blood in the spaces surrounding the brain cells (hemorrhagic). Brain cells that are fed by the blocked or damaged artery cannot work properly, and quickly die. If you have a stroke you may have trouble speaking or understanding, have weakness or numbness of an arm or leg, or have memory loss. Stroke is the leading cause of disability in adults and is the fourth leading cause of death in the United States.

Having a stroke is an emergency. The greatest chance for recovery from stroke occurs when emergency treatment is started right away.