Diagnosis, management and prevention of ischemic stroke for non-neurologists


Kavian Ghandehari 1 , *

1 Associat Professor of Neurology, Neuroscience Research Center, Mashhad University of Medical Sciences and Health Services, Mashhad, Iran.

How to Cite: Ghandehari K. Diagnosis, management and prevention of ischemic stroke for non-neurologists, Zahedan J Res Med Sci. 2011 ; 13(3):e94007.


Zahedan Journal of Research in Medical Sciences: 13 (3); e94007
Published Online: January 20, 2011
Article Type: Review Article
Received: October 22, 2010
Accepted: November 16, 2010


Background: Stroke is the third common cause of disability and death. Diagnosis of stroke is based on its clinical manifestations and/or observation of infarct in the neuroimaging. Standard battery of diagnostic investigations and classification criteria is required for detection of stroke etiology.

Materials and Method: This review article deals with the diagnosis and management of brain infarction particularly in our country and is provided for non-neurologists. Using online scientific search engines and in some parts referring to laboratory archives constituted base of this review article.

Results: Acute stroke management is almost similar in its various etiologies. Neuroprotective drugs have little value in acute stroke management. At present time, a few Iranian medical centers have infrastructure of thrombolysis therapy. Prevention of stroke is based on the detection and control of its risk factors. Aspirin, 80 mg per day is the most common drug for stroke prevention. Co-administration of aspirin 80 mg/d and Dipyridamole 200-400 mg/d increases the preventive effects of aspirin. Clopidogrel 75 mg/d is the stroke preventive drug of choice in patients with peptic ulcer and coronary artery disease. Co-administration of aspirin and clopidogrel is more effective in stroke prevention but has more hemorrhagic complications. Using warfarin for stroke prevention is suggested only in patients who have facilities for repetitive coagulation tests. Carotid endarterectomy is indicated in symptomatic patients with more than 70% stenosis of extracranial internal carotid artery, if performed only by vascular surgeons experienced in carotid surgery.

Conclusion: Many stroke patients are managed by general practitioners and non-neurologists, e.g. internists, cardiologists and neurosurgeons. This review article provides continuous medical education according to Iranian medical curriculum.


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