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Do strokes affect vision?

Definitely. The severity of vision loss associated with strokes is dependent upon the area of the eye in which the stroke occurs or the area of the brain where a stroke occurs. Anyone experiencing visual changes associated with a stroke should be examined by an experienced ophthalmologist.

What specific visual problems are associated with strokes?

Double vision is a possibility as is loss of side vision in both eyes. Complete vision loss in one eye could occur. Reading in general can be difficult; symbol recognition in particular.

Which parts of the eye are affected by stroke?

Strokes particularly affect the retina and the optic nerves. If the retina’s central artery suffers blockage, a profound and permanent loss of central vision in an eye usually occurs. If a retinal branch artery is occluded, the vision loss is less severe and, more importantly, temporary. An experienced ophthalmologist can help patients recover from a branch retinal artery occlusion.

When a stroke directly affects the optic nerve, vision loss may be complete or partial. There is little an ophthalmologist can do to repair an optic nerve or brain tissue in the visual cortex damaged by an ischemic stroke.

What can I do to reduce the risk of stroke?

Control your blood pressure, cholesterol and blood glucose.

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