AHA News: Many Women Plagued by Anxiety After Stroke



But that self-assurance quickly was undermined by severe anxiety, panic attacks and depression.

New research adds to the evidence that Doyal's experience is all too common.

A new study finds that one in four stroke survivors report experiencing moderate to severe anxiety two to eight weeks after their stroke, with incidence more common in women and those who are single, divorced or widowed.

"We believe there is a bi-directional relationship between stroke and anxiety," said the study's lead researcher Jennifer Beauchamp, a researcher at the University of Texas Health Institute for Stroke and Cerebrovascular Diseases in Houston. The findings were reported this week at the American Stroke Association's International Stroke Conference in Honolulu.

The researchers analyzed the health records of 194 ischemic stroke survivors. An ischemic stroke occurs when a blood vessel to the brain is obstructed, cutting off blood flow. It accounts for about 87 percent of the nearly 800,000 strokes that occur in the United States each year.

All of the survivors had been screened for generalized anxiety disorder at a follow-up visit at a stroke clinic. Beauchamp and her team found that 32 percent of women and 21 percent of men reported moderate to severe anxiety. The patients with this level of anxiety were significantly more likely to be single, divorced or widowed than those without moderate to severe anxiety.

Anxiety after a stroke may be due to a combination of psychosocial factors and biological changes to the brain caused by the stroke, said Dr. Nada El Husseini, a neurologist at Duke University Medical Center in Durham, North Carolina, who was not involved with the study. Having a history of anxiety or depression may also play a role, she said.

That was the case for Doyal, who was diagnosed with anxiety about 15 years before her stroke and had always easily managed it with medication. She also had a family history of depression.

But she'd never felt so overwhelmed until after her stroke.

"I felt like I had 10 pounds of bricks on my chest," she said. "I wasn't sleeping. I wasn't eating. I isolated myself. It was destroying my life."

Doctors tried one medication after another, and nothing helped.

"It was worse than the stroke itself," Doyal said. "I was afraid of my own shadow."

More research is needed to help women like Doyal recover after a stroke, said Beauchamp, adding that the patient's anxiety also can affect the caregivers.

El Husseini said as researchers look to identify the best way to treat stroke patients who experience anxiety, they also should "take into consideration the other conditions that stroke patients are predisposed to, including grief, depression, sleep disorders, post-stroke fatigue and post-traumatic stress disorder, and how they relate to anxiety."

Following her stroke in July 2017, Doyal, who was 46 at the time, had another the following April.

"I have had to fight like hell to get to a point where I feel comfortable most of the time," said Doyal, who sought treatment at an inpatient hospital program for anxiety and depression. "My anxiety is still there, but I am managing it. And luckily the depression is dormant. But I walk on egg shells. I know it can come back at any time."


Source: https://www.drugs.com/news/aha-news-many-women-plagued-anxiety-after-stroke-80296.html?utm_source=ddc&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=AHA+News%3A+Many+Women+Plagued+by+Anxiety+After+Stroke

Health News Latest Medical, Nutrition, Fitness News


best exercises and remedies for plantar fasciitis

Typical AD antidepressant withdrawal reactions include increased anxiety, flulike symptoms, insomnia, nausea, imbalance, sensory disturbances, and hyperarousal. But while the science on antidepressants may be murky, there is no shortage of anecdotal evidence about how they can help people, and a what can cause gum pain? steady clip of recent personal essays by grateful users has credited the drugs with everything from stopping. That book really turned my world upside down, she says. Eventually, though, Dalcourt found relief by consulting various holistic health practitioners, and today is med-free and writing a book about her experience. Americas top-selling drug of 2014. Embolic refers to a blood clot or plaque buildup that places itself somewhere within the body and travels to the brain. Treatment for...

So then we have to create a new terrain. He is also the founder of the website Mad in America, whose mission is to serve as a catalyst for rethinking psychiatric care, arguing that the current drug-based paradigm of care has failed our society. The grassroots support and advice forums run the gamut from strictly layperson-led guidance hubs like the Withdrawal Project, Surviving Antidepressants and Everything Matters Beyond Meds to the more structured counsel of holistic psychiatrists such as Breggin and Kelly Brogan, whose pricey. I began to really question the medications I was on, the diagnoses I had the whole medical model of psychiatry and I realized I had no idea who I was. She talked about withdrawal in stages, and noted that how long the process will take varies greatly from one week to 20 years, depending on the person.