A stroke occurs when the blood supply to part of your brain is interrupted or reduced, preventing brain tissue from getting oxygen and nutrients. Brain cells begin to die in minutes. A stroke is a medical emergency, and prompt treatment is crucial. Early action can reduce brain damage and other complication


Signs and symptoms of stroke include:

  • Trouble speaking and understanding what others are saying. 
  • Paralysis or numbness of the face, arm or leg..
  • Problems seeing in one or both eyes. 
  • Headache. 
  • Trouble walking.


There are two main causes of stroke: a blocked artery (ischemic stroke) or leaking or bursting of a blood vessel (hemorrhagic stroke).

Ischemic stroke

This is the most common type of stroke. It happens when the brain’s blood vessels become narrowed or blocked, causing severely reduced blood flow (ischemia). Blocked or narrowed blood vessels are caused by fatty deposits that build up in blood vessels or by blood clots or other debris that travel through your bloodstream and lodge in the blood vessels in your brain.

Hemorrhagic stroke

Hemorrhagic stroke occurs when a blood vessel in your brain leaks or ruptures. Brain hemorrhages can result from many conditions that affect your blood vessels. Factors related to hemorrhagic stroke include:

  • Uncontrolled high blood pressure
  • Over treatment with blood thinners (anticoagulants)
  • Bulges at weak spots in your blood vessel walls (aneurysms)
  • Trauma (such as a car accident)
  • Protein deposits in blood vessel walls that lead to weakness in the vessel wall (cerebral amyloid angiopathy)
  • Ischemic stroke leading to hemorrhage

Risk factors

Many factors can increase your stroke risk. Potentially treatable stroke risk factors include:

Lifestyle risk factors

  • Being overweight or obese
  • Physical inactivity
  • Heavy or binge drinking
  • Use of illegal drugs such as cocaine and methamphetamine

Medical risk factors

  • High blood pressure
  • Cigarette smoking or secondhand smoke exposure
  • High cholesterol
  • Diabetes
  • Obstructive sleep apnea
  • Cardiovascular disease, including heart failure, heart defects, heart infection or abnormal heart rhythm, such as atrial fibrillation
  • Personal or family history of stroke, heart attack or transient ischemic attack

Traditional view:

Ayurveda co-relates stroke with Pakshavadha which develops due to strotorodha (blockage of the channels of blood) which causes obstruction of the normal movement of vata through the body. The blockage usually occurs in the brain causing obstruction of the nerve pathways. Vata begins to localize in the affected area causing depletion of that area in the brain as well as improper nervous activity. Depending on the severity of the obstruction along with the longer duration, the muscles and tendons of half of the body become weak and depleted.

In siddha this is co related with pakkavatham which affects the function of palms, les, fingers, tongue, mouth,and eyes.The early symptoms that manifest are constipation, mood swing, rapid pulse and fainting. Pakkavatham is caused due to vata in association with pitta and kapha which inturn affects the keelnokku kal, melnokku kal, paravu kal and nadukal ( different types of vatam) which affects the organs.


Treatment aims at bringing the vata dosa to normalcy.This is done by purgation first and then traditionally prepared Ayurveda and siddha medicines are administered which normalizes vatam and repairs the damaged tissues.Afterwards external upakarmas are also given which helps to reduce pain, swelling, spasm, weakness and wasting of affected parts.

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