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Suffered with seizure, stroke, unconsciousness. On oxygen machine. What type of stroke was it?

Hello - A week ago, my Aunt B who is 90 years old and in a nursing home, suffered a seizure and is not responding! She makes involuntary movements with hands and feet and grunting noises. Her doctor examined her for the second time and told her sister that Aunt B suffered a stroke to the back of the brain and with that type of stroke, there is no chance of recovery; it's just a matter of time. There has been no change to her unconsciousness since last week. She is on a portable oxygen machine on and off and basically the machine is keeping her alive. It's like she is in a deep sleep. My questions are: (1) I am not sure if she had the seizure first, then a stroke? and (2) What type of stroke did she have? Are the stroke and seizure similar? Thank you. TS
Asked On : Wed, 16 Oct 2013
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Neurologist 's  Response
Nov 2013
Thank you for posting your query.

Aunt B has most probably suffered a stroke of posterior circulation, involving cerebellum and brainstem (parts of brain located at the back). This type of stroke is serious, with 80% people either dying from it or surviving in a vegetative state. The outcome is also poorer in older people.

Seizures can occur in stroke, either at onset or after stroke.

Seizures are also called fits and they are not same as stroke. Stroke refers to lack of blood supply to a part of brain resulting in paralysis which is long term deficit, whereas seizures are temporary loss of consciousness or involuntary movements.

I hope it helps.
Best wishes,
Dr Sudhir Kumar MD DM (Neurology)
Senior Consultant Neurologist
Answered: Sun, 20 Oct 2013
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