Stroke occurs when the blood supply to part of your brain is interrupted, depriving brain tissue of oxygen and nutrients. Stroke is a medical emergency.
Most headaches aren't caused by a serious illness, but some could be a sign of a life-threatening condition.
Tests and diagnosis
A computerized tomography (CT) angiogram could tell if your heart's arteries are blocked. These tests aren't for everyone, and some experts worry about radiation risks.
A CT scan is an imaging test that uses X-rays to produce detailed images of the inside of your body.
MRI uses a magnetic field and radio waves to create detailed images of the organs and tissues within your body.
Ultrasound imaging uses high-frequency sound waves to create images of structures in your body.
Treatments and drugs
Carotid angioplasty and stenting — Overview covers definition, risks and results of this stroke treatment.
Oct. 01, 2011
- Carotid artery disease. National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute. http://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/health/dci/Diseases/catd/catd_whatis.html. Accessed June 24, 2011.
- Carotid artery disease, stroke, transient ischemic attacks (TIAs). Society for Vascular Surgery. http://www.vascularweb.org/vascularhealth/Pages/carotid-artery-disease-,-stroke-,-transient-ischemic-attacks-(-tias-)-.aspx. Accessed June 24, 2011.
- Feldman G, et al. Peripheral arterial disease. In: Bope ET, et al. Conn's Current Therapy. Philadelphia, Pa.: Saunders Elsevier; 2011. http://www.mdconsult.com/books/about.do?eid=4-u1.0-B978-1-4377-0986-5..C2009-0-38984-9--TOP&isbn=978-1-4377-0986-5&about=true&uniqId=236797353-5. Accessed June 25, 2011.
- Schwartz J, et al. Cardiovascular disease in the elderly. In: Bonow RO, et al. Braunwald's Heart Disease: A Textbook of Cardiovascular Medicine. 9th ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Saunders Elsevier; 2012. http://www.mdconsult.com/books/about.do?eid=4-u1.0-B978-1-4377-0398-6..C2009-0-59734-6--TOP&isbn=978-1-4377-0398-6&about=true&uniqId=236798031-10. Accessed June 25, 2011.
- Furie KL, et al. Evaluation of carotid artery stenosis. http://www.uptodate.com/home/index.html. Accessed June 24, 2011.
- Questions and answers about carotid endarterectomy. National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke. http://www.ninds.nih.gov/disorders/stroke/carotid_endarterectomy_backgrounder.htm. Accessed June 24, 2011.
- FDA expands approved use for carotid stent. U.S. Food and Drug Administration. http://www.fda.gov/NewsEvents/Newsroom/PressAnnouncements/ucm254430.htm. Accessed June 24, 2011.
- Angioplasty and vascular stenting. Radiological Society of North America. http://www.radiologyinfo.org/en/info.cfm?pg=angioplasty. Accessed June 24, 2011.
- Healthy diet goals. American Heart Association. http://www.heart.org/HEARTORG/GettingHealthy/NutritionCenter/HealthyDietGoals/Healthy-Diet-Goals_UCM_310436_SubHomePage.jsp. Accessed June 28, 2011.
- Meissner I (expert opinion). Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. July 6, 2011.