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Mini-strokes leave 'hidden' brain damage: Vancouver Coastal Health and UBC Research
Date:1/28/2011

ne side of the body. Symptoms usually resolve quickly and many people do not take such an episode seriously. However, TIAs are often warning signs of a future stroke. The risk of a stroke increases dramatically in the days after an attack, and the TIA may offer an opportunity to find a cause or minimize the risk to prevent the permanent neurologic damage that results because of a stroke.

"These findings are very important," says Dr. Philip Teal, head of the Stroke Prevention Clinic at VGH and co-author of the study. "We know that TIA is a warning sign of future stroke. We treat every TIA as though it will result in a stroke, but not every person goes on to have a stroke. By refining this brain mapping technique, our hope is to identify who is most at risk, and direct treatment more appropriately."

The use of transcranial magnetic stimulation in examining the patterns of brain activation as they relate to motor learning after stroke has been a main focus of Dr. Boyd and her research lab.

The research team has recently received a Canadian Institutes for Health Research grant to continue their research in this area. "We know now that people may look and feel fine, and even standard imaging says they are fine, but they are not," says Jodi Edwards, PhD candidate in the School of Population and Public Health, UBC, lead author of the study, and member of Dr. Boyd's lab. "We want to know if the damage persists, if we can identify who is most at risk, and how we can most effectively target the damaged area for optimum treatment. We are extremely excited to continue to follow this work."


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Contact: Lisa Carver
lisa.carver@vch.ca
604-875-4111 x61777
University of British Columbia
Source:Eurekalert

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