A Springfield neurologist says the stroke suffered by Illinois’ junior U.S. senator is rare. Sen. Mark S. Kirk (R-Ill.) suffered an ischemic stroke last weekend, which doctors say could impair movement on the left side of his body. Dr. Sajjad Mueed, a neurologist at the SIU School of Medicine, says ischemic strokes aren’t rare, but the cause of Kirk’s stroke is.
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“The artery from inside actually has a tear, and the blood comes through the tear in the wall in the artery and blocks the artery,” he says. “That’s called dissection, and that’s a relatively uncommon cause.” Mueed says stroke symptoms include dizziness, numbness on one side of the body and vision problems. He implores anyone with such symptoms to seek medical help right away, as every minute counts during a stroke. Mueed says stroke victims will have the best chance of recovery if they stick to a strict medicine regimen and go through physical therapy – the more intense, the better.