From Stroke to Soccer in Just One Week

Published on February 27, 2019

Each year, 15 million people worldwide suffer a stroke.[1] This high mortality rate and the massive complications for those affected call for innovative treatment options. See how ultrahigh resolution imaging and a fast workflow allowed a young stroke sufferer to go on as if nothing had happened.

Half-sided affective disorder, acute dizziness, or temporary blindness in one eye: In about half of these cases, the body shows warning signs of impending brain infarction. In a cerebral infarction, also called stroke, there is a lack of oxygen supply to the brain. The result is that brain cells die. Men and women are equally affected by the disease. Although most patients are over the age of 65,[2] more and more young people are also experiencing strokes.[3]

There are essentially two types of stroke: In an ischemic stroke, a thrombus blocks the free flow of blood to the brain. This type of stroke occurs in about 87% of cases.[2] In a hemorrhagic stroke, by contrast, bleeding in the brain leads to an undersupply of blood and the subsequent death of brain tissue.

The long-term complications for survivors of strokes are varied and depend on the size of the damaged brain area: In addition to speech and visual disturbances, symptoms such as paralysis or memory disorders can have a major impact on a person’s quality of life.

In particular, the seriousness of the physical and mental consequences and the high death rate from the disease lead to considerable social and economic burdens. In the U.S. alone, stroke treatment consumes up to $34 billion.[2] A similar picture emerges in Europe – €45 billion annually flow into the care of stroke patients.[4]

New imaging techniques not only reduce the cost of stroke management, they also make treatment gentler for patients and keep the impact to a minimum. For the young stroke patient, this meant he could continue to play soccer in no time at all.