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Ischemic bowel disease

Ischemic bowel disease is a medical condition that occurs due to lack of blood flow to the intestines. This disease is seen mostly in older people. If the condition is mild, the disease may improve without treatment. But Ischemic bowel disease can result in an emergency situation in some cases. Ischemic bowel disease results from blocked or narrowed arteries. Tumors or blood clots can be the cause for reduced blood supply. Atherosclerosis is another cause for narrowed arteries.

Patients suffering form Ischemic bowel disease notice abdominal pain, after eating. There might be rectal bleeding in some cases. Symptoms of ischemic bowel disease include abdominal cramps, nausea and vomiting. The abdomen appears distended and there might be episodes of diarrhea. Certain conditions such as colon cancer, diabetes, congestive heart failure, peripheral vascular disease and sickle cell cancer can increase a person's risk of developing Ischemic bowel disease.

Diagnosis can be done based on abdomen x-rays and colonoscopy. Angiography of the arteries supplying blood to the bowel helps in detecting the severity of the condition. Antibiotics help in minimizing the infection. Surgery is resorted to in severe cases.

Transient Ischemic Attack

Transient Ischemic Attack or TIA occurs when there is a brief impairment in blood flow to the brain. This results in stroke-like symptoms such as dizziness, confusion, clumsiness, lack of coordination and difficulty in reading, writing or recognizing people. The patient might experience trouble speaking and understanding speech. There might be slurred speech and dimming of vision. A TIA is different from a stroke in that it does not cause death of brain tissue. Besides, the blockage dissolves soon.

Typical reasons for a transient ischemic attack are blood clots, high blood pressure, diabetes, atrial fibrillation and high cholesterol. Several tests can help diagnose if a person has suffered a transient ischemic attack. Irregular blood flow can be detected by an abnormal sound (bruit) that is noticed with a stethoscope. ECG or angiogram is done to check where the blood flow is blocked. Blood pressure is likely to be very high. The source of atherosclerosis is usually identified with an ultrasound. Aspirin might be prescribed to reduce blood clotting. Other conditions such as hypertension, diabetes and cholesterol need to be treated.

Cerebral hemorrhage

Cerebral hemorrhage also known as stroke is associated with ischemic conditions. These types of conditions often occur when the brain experiences shortage of blood supply. The brain cells get damaged as a result of bleeding internally. There are several types of cerebral hemorrhage caused in different regions of the brain. The most predominant type of cerebral hemorrhages include:

Lateral Aspect of Brain

Intra cerebral hemorrhages: In this condition the brain experiences internal bleeding and it occurs in the region of the cerebellum depending upon the zone of injury that leads to the bleeding. The parenchymal tissues of the brain undergo severe damage in this condition.

Subarachnoid hemorrhages: This type of bleeding is caused between the membranes lining the brain.

Subdural hematoma: This is commonly found in athletes such as boxers and wrestlers. The injury or trauma is caused to the veins underneath the dura of the brain.

Epidural hematoma: This is also a condition caused because of trauma or head injury. The meningeal artery is ruptured leading to bleeding in the region between skull and membrane covering the brain.

Other forms of damage caused to the brain predominantly include ventricular damage which is caused because of trauma to the ventricles of the brain which contain the cerebrospinal fluid.

Causes of stroke

Cerebral hemorrhage or stroke may occur because of many reasons. In most forms it is closely associated with congenital abnormalities of the brain and also because of trauma or altered lifestyle patterns. Some of the common conditions that cause cerebral hemorrhages are aneurysms; deformities in the arterial and venous supply to the brain, presence of abnormal proteins such amyloids which lead to deterioration of brain cells and hypertension.


The major risk factors for cerebral hemorrhage are hypertension, trauma and alcoholism. This condition mostly occurs in patients who have a history of diabetes, habits such as alcoholism, smoking and aged people. Many patients experience numbness in their hands, legs, blurred vision, headaches, confusion and also impaired speech patterns because of hypertension associated cerebral hemorrhage. The damage is caused predominantly in the ventricular region of the brain.

The symptoms associated with cerebral hemorrhage often lead to paralysis, seizures and sudden loss of consciousness, tingling sensation in the feet, altered taste patterns, nausea and inability to swallow. This happens because of ischemia or lack of blood supply to the brain which inevitably affects the neuromuscular activity of the body. In addition to these, cerebral hemorrhage also results due to liver damage or brain tumor.


In case of head injury or trauma, the hematomas have to be removed as soon as possible with thorough evaluation of the damaged regions of the skull in association with the membranes to rule out all possibilities of internal organ bleeding or presence of any kind of blood clots. Patients are rushed in for radiological examinations to minimize the time required to intervene the situation of head injury as any delay can be fatal. In patients with hypertension and previous history of diabetes, thorough radiological examination is performed to identify the ischemic regions present in the brain. Abnormal blood vessels are corrected using interventional radiology.

Treatment options for cerebral hemorrhages are often associated with treatments pertaining to hypertension and diabetes. Patients are counseled to undergo corrective surgeries in case of hemorrhages associated with aneurysms.

Tags: #Ischemic bowel disease #Transient Ischemic Attack #Cerebral hemorrhage
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Collection of Pages - Last revised Date: April 15, 2024