Where the stroke is located in the brain determines what bodily functions will be affected. Physical and mental effects may include changes in:
This can include problems with:
• talking and understanding what people say
• writing and understanding written words
• being able to name things or find the right words
• slurred speech
This can mean seeing less well on one side or the other, in one eye or both eyes, or double vision. Patients may also have problems seeing or judging how far away things are and whether they are above or below, in front of or behind other things.
Ability to Move
This may include weakness, loss of feeling or difficulty with:
• moving parts of the body, including mouth, arm or leg
• swallowing and eating
• controlling bladder and bowels
• knowing parts of the body and where they are in space, coordinating movements, and keeping balance
Feelings and Depression
Many stroke patients feel sad, helpless and frustrated at times. Recovering from a stroke is a big challenge. It is important to watch for signs of depression and find help.
Learning and Memory
This can include trouble with:
• learning and keeping new information
• following directions
• paying attention
Patients sometimes behave differently following a stroke. They may talk more than normal or seem more nervous or careful. Emotions may seem mixed up and can include crying or laughing for no reason.
Judgment and Thinking
Problems some patients face include:
• acting different from usual
• not caring about things
• acting without thinking
• being moody and feeling sadder than usual
• having trouble understanding time
• having difficulty with math
• having trouble organizing things or understanding how things work
Despite the effects of a stroke, many stroke patients are able to continue living a full life.
For more information about strokes and stroke treatment, download our patient guide.