Norton Children’s board-certified and fellowship-trained neurologists and neurosurgeons are the leading providers of stroke care in Louisville, Kentucky and Southern Indiana.
Norton Children’s Hospital is the pediatric teaching hospital for the University of Louisville School of Medicine. Our physicians have expertise in their fields and are training the next generation of pediatric specialists.
We’ll determine the cause of your child’s stroke and create a treatment plan that minimizes risk so your child can get back to being a kid.
What Is a Stroke?
A stroke is a medical emergency where blood flow to the brain is blocked or there is bleeding on the brain. Without blood flow, oxygen cannot get to the brain tissue, and it begins to die.
Strokes can affect a person at any age, but are much more common in older adults.
If you think your child may be having a stroke, call 911 immediately.
Stroke Symptoms in Babies
Symptoms of strokes in babies may be subtle. They may develop low muscle tone or floppiness, lethargy or sleepiness, seizures, or apnea or breathing pauses.
Also, strokes in babies may go unrecognized for hours or days. Symptoms that might appear during this time include seizures, weakness on one side of the body, developmental delays or abnormal muscle tone.
Stroke Symptoms in Children
In children, stroke symptoms may include weakness or numbness in part of the body, such as the face, arm or leg; difficulty speaking or understanding someone else speaking to them; loss of vision or double vision; balance issues; or sudden onset severe headache.
Stroke Risk Factors
Babies, young children, adolescents and adults have different risk factors for stroke.
The following may increase risk for strokes in newborns:
- Abnormalities of the placenta
- Infection and delivery complications
- Complications during the perinatal period (the time just before birth and one to four weeks after)
In children, the risks include:
- Abnormal blood vessels (arteriovenous malformations, cavernous malformations, aneurysms, moyamoya, etc.)
- Blood conditions (sickle cell, thrombophilia or easy clotting, hemophilia)
- Congenital heart disease
- Head or neck trauma
- Dehydration and the use of certain medications (chemotherapies, oral contraceptives
Getting your child to the emergency department as soon as possible is important so our team can administer specific medication that can treat certain forms of strokes.
During poststroke care in the acute setting, your child typically will be admitted to the intensive care unit, where our team will closely monitor him or her and make additional evaluations.