Symptoms of a “Silent Stroke” – Eat This Not That

Silent strokes that do not have obvious symptoms are more common than people think, affecting at least a third of people over 70. “A blood vessel may become blocked, the tissue supplied by that vessel may die, but the person does not experience symptoms so that they may not know they have had a stroke.” Karen Fury, MD, MPH says, associate professor at Harvard Medical School and director of the Massachusetts General Hospital Stroke Service. Here are five symptoms strongly associated with silent stroke, according to physicians. Read on—and to ensure your health and the health of others, don’t forget to check out these Sure Signs You’ve Already Had COVID,

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Ongoing cognitive issues may be the result of a series of silent strokes. “We know that if silent strokes really start to accumulate it can start to affect things like memory and thinking as well,” Says stroke neurologist Dr. Shazam Hussain, “Coming to the broader topic of how a stroke can affect other things, we know that there is a whole subset of dementia called vascular dementia, which accounts for a large proportion of the number of people with dementia, and it’s really I’m related to these silent strokes. They’re happening in the brain.”

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Doctors say unexplained clumsiness may be linked to silent stroke. “A silent stroke can also produce symptoms that you mistakenly attribute to something else, such as garden-variety clumsiness or random memory lapses,” Tony Golen, MD, and Hope Ricciotti, MD say, “Similar to reducing the chance of a major stroke, addressing cardiovascular risk factors such as high cholesterol and high blood pressure also reduces the risk of having a silent stroke.”


Loss of balance and confusion can be signs of a silent stroke. “A silent stroke refers to a stroke that does not cause any noticeable symptoms,” Harvard Health says, “Most strokes are caused by a clot blocking a blood vessel in the brain. The blockage prevents blood and oxygen from reaching the area, causing nearby brain cells to die. Depending on the location of the clot, this weakness can cause symptoms such as numbness in an arm or leg (which can lead to a fall) or trouble speaking or seeing.”

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Experts say that a silent stroke can directly affect the part of the brain that is responsible for memory. The damage can be quite bad with multiple strokes. “The more brain damage or injury you have because of these silent strokes, the harder it is for the brain to function normally,” Dr. Fury says,

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Sudden difficulties with speech may be a sign of silent stroke. “It is important to see your family doctor when there is concern about neurological symptoms such as weakness or difficulty speaking because silent strokes put people at risk not only for future symptomatic strokes but also for cognitive decline and dementia, ” Eric E. Smith, MD. They say, an associate professor of neurology at the University of Calgary in Alberta, Canada. “Radiologists need to report this and physicians need to act on it.”

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Firozan Mast is a science, health and wellness writer with a passion for making science and research-backed information accessible to a general audience. Read more about Turquoise

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