Stroke in the top ten causes of death in children

Stroke in the top ten causes of death in under 18s

Stroke is the sixth leading cause of death in children, reports Children's Hospital of Philadelphia. Here is what you need to know about paediatric stroke. 

Mother hands covers hands of little daughter
mother hands covers hands of little daughter/ iStock

Paediatric stroke is not always put in the spotlight. 

Although there is much information about adults suffering from a stroke, people seldom think it can happen to children. 

According to the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, a stroke is the sixth leading cause of death in children. Medical News Today reports that paediatric stroke is among the top 10 causes of childhood mortality and affects 2.3 to 13 children per 100,000 each year.

Paediatric stroke refers to stroke that occurs in children from 29 days old up to the age of 18.

According to the Stroke Organisation, there are two main types of stroke - Ischaemic strokes which are due to a blocked blood vessel in the brain and haemorrhagic strokes which are due to bleeding in or around the brain. Both types of stroke can occur in children. 

The risk factors for Ischaemic stroke include - heart disorders, blood disorders, infections, and vascular disorders.

READ: Lira marks one year since she had a stroke 

Symptoms of stroke in children as stated by the American Stroke Association include: 

- Facial drooping

- Arm weakness

- Speech difficulty

- Sudden and severe headache, alongside sleepiness and vomiting

- Sudden numbness and weakness on one side of the body

- Sudden confusion

- Difficulty understanding others or speaking

- Difficulty seeing in one or both eyes

- Seizures, typically on one side of the body. 

If you have witnessed any of the signs stated above, it is important to take your child to a doctor who will run tests to confirm whether your child has suffered a stroke. 

The doctor will provide the most suitable form of treatment for your child according to the type of stroke she/he suffered. 

READ: Stroke: prevention, treatment, and recovery

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Disclaimer: Health-related information provided in this article is not a substitute for medical advice and should not be used to diagnose or treat health problems. It is always advisable to consult with your doctor on any health-related issues.

Image courtesy of iStock/ @fizkes

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