A Stroke Association survey, conducted by ICM Research, indicates that the risk of stroke is heightened in many individuals who fail to recognize the signs of transient ischaemic attacks (TIAs). The London-based association’s survey reportedly encompassed 2,000 members of the public and suggested that 68% of those surveyed did not recognize the symptoms of a TIA, with 26% misinterpreting the symptoms as those of a heart attack. 

The results indicate that 87% of those who participated in the poll would be worried if they experienced the symptoms of TIA, yet 74% report that they would not take any emergency action or go to the hospital. The Stroke Association notes that 68% had never heard of TIA and 40% were not aware of TIA’s role as a warning sign of a major stroke.

A recent news release notes that 46,000 individuals sustain a TIA every year in the UK. Peter Rothwell, MD, PhD, FRCP, professor of clinical neurology, Oxford University, lead researcher of the project, emphasizes that TIA is an emergency, and that many who experience one may sustain a major stroke if urgent medical attention is not sought. “However, this poll suggests that the signs of a TIA are still being ignored. This needs to be changed,” Rothwell says.

Jon Barrick, Stroke Association chief executive, echoes Rothwell’s sentiment, calling the poll results concerning, “Over 150,000 people have stroke every year in the UK but up to 10,000 of these could be prevented if more people were aware of the symptoms of TIA and sought out emergency treatment…Anyone who experiences the symptoms, regardless of whether they disappear within a matter of minutes should go to the hospital immediately. Assume it’s a stroke until it’s proven not to be by a medical professional,” Barrick says.

Source: Stroke Assoication