Infarction occurs when an area of the brain experiences local tissue death as a result of disease,injury, or lack of blood or oxygen supply. Infarction can occur in all areas of the brain, including the cerebral hemispheres, thalami, basal ganglia, brain stem, or cerebellum.
Causes of Infarction
The most common cause of brain infarction is stroke, which is when blood supply to the brain is interrupted. A ischemic stroke occurs when a blood vessel carrying blood to the brain is blocked by a blood clot. A hemmorhagic stroke occurs when a blood vessel breaks open, causing blood to leak into the brain. The risk of stroke increases with high blood pressure, age, family history, smoking, heart disease, diabetes, and high cholesterol. Drug and alcohol abuse, bleeding disorders, and head injuries can also cause bleeding into the brain.
Symptoms of Infarction
Symptoms of infarction include:
- Weakness, numbness, tingling, or decreased sensation of any body part
- Slurred speech or difficulty speaking; swallowing difficulties and drooling
- Vision changes
- Memory loss
- Loss of coordination and balance; dizziness
- Personality and emotional changes
- Drowsiness and lethargy
- Uncontrollable eye movements or drooping of the eyelids
Prognosis of Infarction
Depending upon the severity of the infarction, degree of recovery, as well as how long it takes to recover, varies from person to person. Rehabilitation often consists of physical therapy, occupational therapy, speech therapy, or a combination of the three.