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What are the different types of stroke?

There are two primary groups into which strokes fall:

strokes that are ischemic. These are strokes brought on by an artery (or, in rare cases, a vein) obstruction. The majority of strokes—roughly 87%—are ischemic.

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stroke hemorrhaging. These are bleeding-related strokes. Hemorrhagic strokes account for around 13% of all cases.

Learn what an ischemic stroke is.

When a blood artery supplying the brain gets “clogged” or obstructed, it affects blood flow to a portion of the brain, resulting in an ischemic stroke. The lack of oxygen and nutrition causes the brain’s tissues and cells to start dying within minutes. Two other categories for ischemic strokes are as follows:

Strokes thrombotic. These are brought on by a thrombus that forms in the cerebral blood arteries.

strokes with emotion. These are brought on by a blood clot or plaque fragment that forms elsewhere in the body and enters the circulation to reach a blood artery in the brain.

Stroke thrombosis

A thrombus, or blood clot, that forms in the arteries delivering blood to the brain is the cause of thrombotic strokes. Older adults are more likely to get this kind of stroke, particularly if they have diabetes, high cholesterol, or atherosclerosis (a buildup of fat and lipids inside blood vessel walls).

During sleep or in the early morning, thrombotic stroke symptoms can sometimes strike without warning. In other situations, it could happen gradually over several hours or even days.

Transient ischemic attacks (TIAs), sometimes known as “mini-strokes,” may occur one or more times prior to thrombotic strokes. TIAs are frequently a warning indication that a stroke may develop and can last anywhere from a few minutes to up to 24 hours. The symptoms of a transient ischemic attack (TIA) are comparable to those of a stroke, although being generally mild and temporary.

A lacunar infarct is a different kind of stroke that happens in the brain’s tiny blood arteries. The Latin root of the term lacunar means “hole” or “cavity.” A higher risk of lacunar infarctions is associated with diabetes and hypertension.


An emboli, or blood clot, that originates elsewhere in the body and makes its way to the brain through the circulation is often the source of embolic strokes. Heart surgery or heart illness are common causes of embolic strokes, which happen quickly and without any warning symptoms. People with atrial fibrillation, a kind of irregular cardiac rhythm in which the heart’s upper chambers beat ineffectively, account for around 15% of embolic stroke cases.

What is a stroke caused by bleeding?

Ruptures and bleedings from a blood artery supplying the brain can result in hemorrhagic strokes. The tissues and cells of the brain do not receive oxygen and nutrients when an artery bleeds into them. Furthermore, inflammation, edema, and pressure buildup in the surrounding tissues might result in further brain injury. There are two primary classifications for hemorrhagic strokes, which comprise the following:

intracerebral bleeding. The brain’s blood arteries are the source of the bleeding.

subarachnoid bleeding. The subarachnoid space, which is the area between the brain and the membranes covering it, is where the bleeding is occurring.

Hemorrhage inside the brain

Elevated blood pressure is often the cause of intracerebral hemorrhage. Bleeding happens quickly and unexpectedly. Usually there are no symptoms, and the bleeding might be so bad that it puts a person in a coma or kills them.

Hemorrhage subarachnoid

Bleeding between the brain and the meninges, the membrane covering the brain, in the subarachnoid space causes subarachnoid hemorrhage. This kind of bleeding frequently results from an arteriovenous malformation (AVM) or an aneurysm. Trauma is another possible cause of it.

An aneurysm is a weak spot on the wall of an artery that has inflated and might burst. Aneurysms can occur later in life as a result of conditions like atherosclerosis or high blood pressure, or they can be congenital (existing from birth).

An AVM is a congenital condition characterized by an unorganized, tangled network of veins and arteries. AVM has no known etiology, yet it can occasionally be inherited or be a component of a specific condition.

What are strokes that recur?

About 1 in 4 persons who have experienced a stroke within 5 years after their initial stroke go on to experience further strokes. The risk is highest immediately following a stroke and gradually declines. With every subsequent stroke, there is an increased risk of death and severe disability. After having a stroke, around 3% of patients experience another one within 30 days of the first one, and roughly 1/3 experience another one within two years.