0
We're unable to sign you in at this time. Please try again in a few minutes.
Retry
We were able to sign you in, but your subscription(s) could not be found. Please try again in a few minutes.
Retry
There may be a problem with your account. Please contact the AMA Service Center to resolve this issue.
Contact the AMA Service Center:
Telephone: 1 (800) 262-2350 or 1 (312) 670-7827  *   Email: subscriptions@jamanetwork.com
Error Message ......
JAMA Patient Page |

Transient Neurological Attacks FREE

Janet M. Torpy, MD, Writer; Cassio Lynm, MA, Illustrator; Richard M. Glass, MD, Editor
JAMA. 2007;298(24):2978. doi:10.1001/jama.298.24.2978.
Text Size: A A A
Published online

With symptoms lasting for up to 24 hours, transient neurological attacks are a warning sign that cerebrovascular disease (disease of the brain's blood vessels) may exist. Also known as a mini-stroke, a transient ischemic attack (TIA) is a focal (affecting one body part or system) type of transient neurological attack. Individuals who experience a TIA are at increased risk of having a stroke. Because TIAs can be caused by several factors, it is important to have an accurate diagnosis for proper treatment and prevention plans. The December 26, 2007, issue of JAMA includes an article about transient neurological attacks.

SIGNS AND SYMPTOMS

  • Sudden loss of vision

  • Double vision

  • Slurred or garbled speech

  • Trouble finding the right words in conversation

  • Weakness, paralysis, numbness, or tingling in an extremity (hand, arm, foot, leg) or in the face

  • Loss of consciousness

  • Sudden loss of balance or difficulty walking

SEE YOUR DOCTOR, CALL THE EMERGENCY RESPONSE SYSTEM, OR GO TO THE EMERGENCY DEPARTMENT IMMEDIATELY IF YOU EXPERIENCE THESE SYMPTOMS.

DIAGNOSIS

Medical history and a physical examination are important parts of diagnosing transient neurological attacks. Further testing may include blood counts and chemistries, x-rays, computed tomography (CT scan), or magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). Angiography (x-ray pictures taken after injection of dye) may be required to look at the brain's blood vessels. You may see a neurologist (a doctor with specialized education in the diagnosis and treatment of neurological diseases) as part of your evaluation for a transient neurological attack.

PREVENTION AND TREATMENT

  • Do not smoke.

  • Exercise daily.

  • Eat a diet rich in fruits, vegetables, and whole grains.

  • Take high blood pressure medications as prescribed.

  • Keep your cholesterol and other blood lipid levels in the healthy range.

  • Manage diabetes and keep blood sugar under good control.

  • Medications, including those that make blood platelets less likely to form clots, may be prescribed for stroke prevention.

  • Aspirin may be recommended for preventing strokes and heart attacks.

  • Surgical procedures, such as carotid endarterectomy (surgical removal of a blockage in the carotid artery in the neck), may be recommended for some individuals to prevent strokes.

FOR MORE INFORMATION

INFORM YOURSELF

To find this and previous JAMA Patient Pages, go to the Patient Page link on JAMA's Web site at http://www.jama.com. Many are available in English and Spanish. A Patient Page on hemorrhagic stroke was published in the October 20, 2004, issue.

Sources: National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke, National Stroke Association, American Heart Association, American Academy of Neurology

The JAMA Patient Page is a public service of JAMA. The information and recommendations appearing on this page are appropriate in most instances, but they are not a substitute for medical diagnosis. For specific information concerning your personal medical condition, JAMA suggests that you consult your physician. This page may be photocopied noncommercially by physicians and other health care professionals to share with patients. To purchase bulk reprints, call 203/259-8724.

TOPIC: NEUROLOGICAL DISORDERS

Tables

References

CME
Also Meets CME requirements for:
Browse CME for all U.S. States
Accreditation Information
The American Medical Association is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education to provide continuing medical education for physicians. The AMA designates this journal-based CME activity for a maximum of 1 AMA PRA Category 1 CreditTM per course. Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity. Physicians who complete the CME course and score at least 80% correct on the quiz are eligible for AMA PRA Category 1 CreditTM.
Note: You must get at least of the answers correct to pass this quiz.
Your answers have been saved for later.
You have not filled in all the answers to complete this quiz
The following questions were not answered:
Sorry, you have unsuccessfully completed this CME quiz with a score of
The following questions were not answered correctly:
Commitment to Change (optional):
Indicate what change(s) you will implement in your practice, if any, based on this CME course.
Your quiz results:
The filled radio buttons indicate your responses. The preferred responses are highlighted
For CME Course: A Proposed Model for Initial Assessment and Management of Acute Heart Failure Syndromes
Indicate what changes(s) you will implement in your practice, if any, based on this CME course.

Multimedia

Some tools below are only available to our subscribers or users with an online account.

Related Content

Customize your page view by dragging & repositioning the boxes below.

Articles Related By Topic
Related Collections
PubMed Articles