Doctors say coronavirus may cause strokes in young patients with no known risk for stroke

Doctors are reporting that the Coronavirus causes stroke in young adults who are infected with the virus.

Recently Mount Sinai Hospital in New York City admitted four young people all within the third or fourth decade of life on account of life-threatening stroke.

Usually, it is very rare forlarge-vessel stroke to occur in young patients especially if they do not have a past history of stroke, however, what was consistent with all four patients was they all had COVID-19.

A stroke occurs when a blood clot travels through the bloodstream and lodges in an artery in the brain. Medical doctors have already reported a number of cases of blood clot formation in patients with severe COVID-19. Broadway actor Nick Cordero had his right leg amputated last month due to uncontrolled and extensive clotting in the leg. Some COVID-19 patients develop tiny blood clots in their lungs while others with renal failure their blood clots and plugs dialysis machines, making it more difficult to manage their illness.

Coronavirus causes stroke in young adults

Strokes are more common in older patients especially those with the risk factors. Coronavirus is surprisingly increasing the incidence of stroke in the young.

Doctors are not yet certain of the mechanism by which coronavirus causes a stroke. However, it is thought that strokes in coronavirus infected patients may arise as a result of a direct attack of the virus on the blood vessels or due to inflammation caused by a reaction of the body’s immune system.

Blood clotting is a natural process that occurs when we get injured. Blood components called platelets together with some blood proteins and clotting factors work in synergy to stop bleeding after an injury. This process is usually well regulated by the body to prevent excessive blood clotting, however, in some conditions, this process is not well regulated and results in excessive bleeding which is life-threatening. Other times blood clot may spontaneously form in blood vessels without an injury. Risk factors for this include obesity, heart disease, hypertension, smoking, previous history of stroke etc.

The recent findings of neurologists are showing that COVID-19 is an important risk factor for developing a stroke.

Dr.Shazam Hussain of Cleveland Clinic asks people to look out for the symptoms of stroke using the acronym ‘BE FAST’

B – Balance and stance problems

E – Eye and visual disturbances

F – Face appears drooping

A – Arm or leg is weak

S – Speech problems

T – Time is important, call the emergency number quickly.

Symptoms of stroke should not be ignored by anyone. Next time you see someone with these symptoms do well to help. Save a life!

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Williams Shekinah Yobuh
A Neurosurgery Enthusiast, Writer, Innovator and Researcher at the University of Ibadan, West Africa's foremost University. Contributor to The Eastern Herald.