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Stroke, weakness in limbs, aphasia, diet changes, physiotherapy, age a factor for recovery ?

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General & Family Physician
Practicing since : 2005
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A friend of mine is in hospital after suffering a stroke 3 weeks back. He is 25 years old and as far as I know doesn't suffer from any illness (e.g. diabetes, hypertension, etc.). He now has weakness on the right limbs and can't talk (aphasia?). The doctors are pretty optimistic that due to his age, with proper therapy, there is a a high chance of recovery. Does age really matters in terms of recovery and what other therapies that we could explore in the alternative to compliment the usual? thanks
Posted Thu, 19 Apr 2012 in Stroke
Answered by Dr. Prasad 3 hours later

Thanks for your query.

Though it is bad news that your friend suffered a stroke at this young age, it is good to hear that he is recovering now.

Yes, your doctors are right. Age is a major factor in determining the chances of recovery after stroke. Young individual recover faster as well are left with less residual effects following recovery when compared with aged. This is probably due of healthier body, less severe pre existing morbidities and so on.

It is important that the doctor looks for the cause of stroke - vasculitis, antiphospholipid antibodies and other rare condition which are responsible for stroke in young. Measures to treat the causative factor are also essential in determining the long term prognosis.

Now to answer your second part of the question; at 3 weeks of recovery nothing much can be added to the treatment that can enhance the role of physiotherapy and rehabilitation procedures than what is suggested by your Physiatrist. Active rehabilitation exercises in the form of limb power; speech training for aphasia, etc is the most essential treatment now.

Hope I have answered your query.

If you have any other query, I will be available to answer them as well.

Above answer was peer-reviewed by
Follow-up: Stroke, weakness in limbs, aphasia, diet changes, physiotherapy, age a factor for recovery ? 1 hour later
Thank you very much for your answer, Dr XXXXXXX I've another query - I've read that acupuncture / acu-pressure massages may be beneficial to assist in recovery alongside physiotherapy, etc. However, there are conflicting studies on this. Whilst I note your advice that at 3 weeks of recovery,nothing much can be added to his treatment at this stage, in your opinion and experience, do you think it is worthwhile to explore this alternative treatment in addition to the physio, occupational and speech therapies that he is undergoing/will be undergoing? And if so, when would be the right or 'safe' period to introduce the additional alternative treatment?
Thank you once again.

Answered by Dr. Prasad 7 hours later
Hi again.
Thanks for follow up query.

Acupuncture/Acupressure massages are advised in stroke cases. But the results/ effectiveness is not constant., which are evident in studies done by the Doctors.
Due to the lack of research, it's too soon to recommend acupuncture for stroke rehabilitation. If you're interested in using acupuncture to treat conditions caused by stroke, talk to your doctor when and how to begin treatment. In using acupuncture for stroke rehabilitation, it's important to work with a qualified medical acupuncturist.

I don't see the scope of any alternate treatment in the present scenario. Alternative treatment is generally not advised in initial 4-6 weeks of stroke.

The most useful complementary therapies for stroke (along with proper medical management) include :

1.Nutrition and Diet (a well-balanced diet with an emphasis on fresh vegetables and fruits; lean, clean protein foods; and whole grains).

2.Vitamin and Nutritional Supplements.

3.Exercise and Bodywork (Walking, gardening and bowling) including Massage, Hydrotherapy, Yoga.

Hope I have answered your query.

If you have any follow up queries I will be available to answer them

Hope your friend recover soon.

Above answer was peer-reviewed by
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