Rehabilitation after a stroke begins in the hospital, often within a day or two after the stroke. Rehab helps ease the transition from hospital to home and can help prevent another stroke. Recovery time after a stroke is different for everyone—it can take weeks, months, or even years.
How long is rehab after a stroke?
- The most rapid recovery usually occurs during the first three to four months after a stroke, but some survivors continue to recover well into the first and second year after their stroke. Some signs point to physical therapy.
- 1 How long does a stroke patient stay in rehab?
- 2 What percentage of stroke patients make a full recovery?
- 3 How long does it take to walk after a stroke?
- 4 What happens in the first 3 days after a stroke?
- 5 How long does it take to regain speech after stroke?
- 6 Which side is worse for a stroke?
- 7 Will you ever be the same after a stroke?
- 8 Can the brain repair itself after a stroke?
- 9 What are the 3 types of strokes?
- 10 What should you not do after a stroke?
- 11 What are the signs of stroke recovery?
- 12 What is the best exercise after a stroke?
- 13 How likely is it to have a second stroke?
- 14 Can you fully recover from a hemorrhagic stroke?
- 15 Are there warning signs days before a stroke?
- 16 Stroke Recovery Timeline
- 17 Day 1: Initial Treatment
- 18 First Few Weeks After a Stroke
- 19 1–3 Months Post-Stroke
- 20 The 6-Month Mark and Beyond
- 21 What to expect as you recover from a stroke
- 21.1 What’s involved in stroke rehabilitation?
- 21.2 When should stroke rehabilitation begin?
- 21.3 How long does stroke rehabilitation last?
- 21.4 Where does stroke rehabilitation take place?
- 21.5 Who participates in your stroke rehabilitation team?
- 21.6 What factors affect the outcome of stroke rehabilitation?
- 21.7 Stroke rehabilitation takes time
- 22 Get the latest health information from Mayo Clinic’s experts.
- 23 See also
- 24 Advertisement
- 25 Stroke recovery timeline: What to expect
- 26 What to expect after a stroke: Possible physical and cognitive effects
- 27 Stroke recovery timeline: Day 1 to one year later (and beyond)
- 28 Stroke Recovery Timeline: How Long Does It Take to Recover?
- 29 How Long Does It Take To Recover From A Stroke?
- 30 Factors That Impact Your Unique Stroke Recovery Time
- 31 Stroke Recovery Timeline Milestones
- 32 See How Other Survivors Are Doing at Different Stages
- 33 Stroke Recovery Takes Time
- 34 Rehab Therapy After a Stroke
- 35 Rehabilitation
- 36 Your recovery team
How long does a stroke patient stay in rehab?
The stay at the facility for usually 2 to 3 weeks and involves a coordinated, intensive program of rehabilitation that may include at least 3 hours of active therapy a day, 5 or 6 days a week.
What percentage of stroke patients make a full recovery?
According to the National Stroke Association, 10 percent of people who have a stroke recover almost completely, with 25 percent recovering with minor impairments. Another 40 percent experience moderate to severe impairments that require special care.
How long does it take to walk after a stroke?
Depending on the severity of the stroke, survivors may have atrophied muscles, reduced stamina, and other physical limitations that may make it difficult to take even a few first steps. The good news is that the NIH reports that 65-85% of stroke victims do learn to walk independently again after 6 months.
What happens in the first 3 days after a stroke?
During the first few days after your stroke, you might be very tired and need to recover from the initial event. Meanwhile, your team will identify the type of stroke, where it occurred, the type and amount of damage, and the effects. They may perform more tests and blood work.
How long does it take to regain speech after stroke?
Most individuals see a significant improvement in speech within the first six months of suffering a stroke. During this time, the brain is healing and repairing itself, so recovery is much quicker. But for others, the recovery process can be slow and their aphasia may endure for several more months and even years.
Which side is worse for a stroke?
The terms Left Brain Stroke and Right Brain Stroke refer to the side of the brain where the obstruction causing the stroke occurs. There is not a worse or better side to have a stroke on as both sides control many important functions, but a more severe stroke will result in amplified effects.
Will you ever be the same after a stroke?
Recovery time after a stroke is different for everyone—it can take weeks, months, or even years. Some people recover fully, but others have long-term or lifelong disabilities.
Can the brain repair itself after a stroke?
Fortunately, damaged brain cells are not beyond repair. They can regenerate — this process of creating new cells is called neurogenesis. The most rapid recovery usually occurs during the first three to four months after a stroke. However, recovery can continue well into the first and second year.
What are the 3 types of strokes?
The three main types of stroke are:
- Ischemic stroke.
- Hemorrhagic stroke.
- Transient ischemic attack (a warning or “mini-stroke”).
What should you not do after a stroke?
3 Things Not to Do When Someone Is Having a Stroke
- Do Not Let that person go to sleep or talk you out of calling 911. Stroke survivors often complain of suddenly feeling very sleepy when a stroke first happens.
- Do Not Give them medication, food, or drinks.
- Do Not Drive yourself or someone else to the emergency room.
What are the signs of stroke recovery?
Signs of Recovery from Stroke
- Progress occurring fastest within the first 3 months.
- Independence increasing with the activities of daily living.
- Early ability to cross legs is linked to better recovery.
- Sleepiness or tiredness could be a sign of recovery.
- Downsized compensatory techniques signify recovery.
What is the best exercise after a stroke?
The guidelines recommend that stroke survivors engage in 20 to 60 minutes of aerobic exercise such as walking three to seven days per week. The exercise can be done in 10-minute intervals with the goal being at least 20 minutes per day.
How likely is it to have a second stroke?
Even after surviving a stroke, you’re not out of the woods, since having one makes it a lot more likely that you’ll have another. In fact, of the 795,000 Americans who will have a first stroke this year, 23 percent will suffer a second stroke.
Can you fully recover from a hemorrhagic stroke?
According to the National Stroke Association, 10 percent of people who have a stroke recover almost completely, with 25 percent recovering with minor impairments. Another 40 percent experience moderate to severe impairments that require special care.
Are there warning signs days before a stroke?
– Warning signs of an ischemic stroke may be evident as early as seven days before an attack and require urgent treatment to prevent serious damage to the brain, according to a study of stroke patients published in the March 8, 2005 issue of Neurology, the scientific journal of the American Academy of Neurology.
Stroke Recovery Timeline
A stroke is a life-threatening emergency, and the sooner you receive care, the better the outcome. However, what happens in the days, weeks, and months following a stroke is not well understood. “At times, the process can be sluggish and unclear, and different people recover in a variety of ways,” says April Pruski, M.D., a stroke rehabilitation specialist at Johns Hopkins University. Although recovery looks different for everyone, it can be beneficial to gain a feel of the stroke healing timeline so you know what to anticipate if you or a loved one has a stroke.
Keep an eye out for these indications.
Day 1: Initial Treatment
A stroke victim will almost certainly be sent to an emergency department for treatment to stabilize their condition and ascertain the sort of stroke they have had. The treatment of ischemic stroke, which is caused by a blood clot, can help lessen the long-term damage if you receive treatment as soon as possible after the occurrence. Depending on the severity of the stroke, you may need to be admitted to an intensive care unit or hospitalized for a period of time. “Beginning therapy as soon as feasible once the underlying cause of the stroke has been addressed is critical in the recovery from a stroke,” explains Pruski.
Doctors of physical medicine and rehabilitation, neurologists, physical and occupational therapists, speech-language pathologists, and nurses make up the rehabilitation team.
First Few Weeks After a Stroke
A normal hospital stay following a stroke lasts between five and seven days, depending on the circumstances. During this period, the stroke care team will analyze the consequences of the stroke, and the rehabilitation plan will be developed as a result of their findings. The following are examples of long-term consequences of stroke, which vary from person to person and are dependent on the severity of the stroke and the region of the brain affected:
- Memory issues and difficulty communicating are examples of cognitive symptoms. Physical signs and symptoms such as weakness, paralysis, and trouble swallowing
- Psychological signs and symptoms Emotional manifestations such as despair and impulsivity
- Excessive tiredness and difficulty sleeping
Through collaboration with a patient to execute various tasks, such as walking or combing their hair, physical and occupational therapy can assist detect which parts of the brain are being impacted. Speech-language therapy is essential for individuals who have difficulty swallowing as a result of a stroke or as a result of having a breathing tube in place. While a patient is in the hospital, therapy sessions can be done up to six times per day, which helps to assess the extent of the damage caused by the stroke and to jump-start the recovery process.
Stroke Rehabilitation Priorities
After a stroke, the activities of daily living (ADL) become the primary focus of recovery. ADLs are actions that most people perform every day, such as bathing and cooking. However, you should also discuss with your care team activities that are essential to you, like as executing a work-related skill or engaging in a hobby, in order to help them develop recovery objectives for you. While treatment is crucial, it is also necessary to put your newfound knowledge into practice on your own. A stroke can have substantial cognitive and emotional consequences for both patients and carers, in addition to impacting daily living activities.
The services of rehabilitation psychologists and neuropsychologists can test for these types of issues and construct a strategy to enhance cognitive function and build resilience in the face of what might be irreversible lifestyle changes.
Leaving the Hospital After a Stroke
Your care team will develop a discharge plan that will be based on your level of functional impairment and will be followed strictly. Following your hospitalization, you may choose to continue your recovery in the following ways:
- If you can benefit from being closely supervised by a physician and can handle three hours of treatment each day, you should consider entering an inpatient rehabilitation center or an independent rehabilitation facility. If you require a more gradual course of rehabilitation with one to two hours of therapy each day, you should choose a subacute rehabilitation center. With occasional visits to an outpatient rehabilitation facility, you can recover at home.
When it comes to returning home after a stroke, Pruski believes that you don’t have to be in perfect condition. It is permissible to return home if you are able to carry out the majority of your usual daily activities in your home setting and/or if you have family assistance to assist you with these tasks.
1–3 Months Post-Stroke
In the aftermath of a stroke, the first three months are critical for recovery, and this is the time period during which patients will show the most improvement, according to Pruski. Patients will either begin and finish an inpatient rehabilitation program or make significant progress during their outpatient therapy sessions during this time period. In stroke rehabilitation, the objective is to restore function to as close to pre-stroke levels as feasible or to establish compensatory measures to operate with a functional impairment that has occurred.
It is possible for patients to have spontaneous recovery during the first three months after having had a stroke. This is when a skill, ability, or capacity that had been lost due to a previous stroke returns unexpectedly when the brain learns new methods to execute the activities.
Patients may face setbacks in the months following a stroke, such as pneumonia, a heart attack, or a second stroke, depending on their individual circumstances. These difficulties can have substantial consequences for a person’s physical, mental, and emotional well-being, and rehabilitation may need to be put on hold as a result. When there are setbacks in your recovery, it is critical to collaborate with your care team in order to change your goals.
Exploring New Treatments
In spite of the fact that physical, occupational, and speech therapy continue to be the most important components of stroke rehabilitation, researchers are always developing innovative approaches to augment or supplement existing treatments. Noninvasive brain stimulation (NIBS) is a cutting-edge technology that employs mild electrical currents to activate parts of the brain involved with specific functions such as movement or speech, hence improving performance. This stimulation may assist in enhancing the results of treatment.
The 6-Month Mark and Beyond
Improvements are possible after six months, but they will be considerably more gradual. At this stage, the majority of stroke patients have returned to a pretty stable state. For some, this will result in a complete recovery. Others will suffer from long-term deficits, which are referred to as chronic stroke disease. The likelihood of a complete recovery from a stroke is dependent on a number of factors, including the severity of the stroke, the speed with which the first therapy was administered, and the type and intensity of rehabilitation.
Despite the fact that healing is slowing, it is still critical to maintain contact with members of your care team, including but not limited to:
- In addition to assisting you with your stroke recovery, your main care physician may also assist you in taking actions to avoid future strokes
- Your primary care physician A rehabilitation physician (physiatrist), who can assist you in coordinating elements of your recovery and who will continue to meet with you for as long as you require support, whether it is for a few years or the rest of your life
- And A team of professionals that can assist you in regaining as much function as possible in your daily activities while focusing on your own goals
- Physical, occupational, and speech therapists
- The services of a neurologist, who is familiar with the mechanisms behind stroke-related brain damage and who can provide specialized therapies that are targeted specifically to the afflicted region of the brain
- The services of a rehabilitation psychologist, who may assist in the recovery process by assisting with cognitive, emotional, and behavioral functioning as well as reintegrating into the society
In his role as a physiatrist, Pruski seeks to assist patients in any way he can during routine exams. The two of us will devise a strategy if there is any way I can assist them in maximizing their capacity to communicate, returning to work, improving sleep habits, building muscular tone, reducing the danger of falling, or meeting psychological requirements. Coordination of efforts among professionals might pave the way for additional advancement months or even years down the road. Despite the fact that some patients may require more time to recuperate, there is always hope for tiny improvements.
What to expect as you recover from a stroke
Stroke rehabilitation is a critical component of the healing process following a stroke. Learn about the steps that are involved in stroke rehabilitation. Staff at the Mayo Clinic The purpose of stroke rehabilitation is to assist you in relearning abilities that were lost as a result of a stroke that impacted a portion of your brain. Stroke rehabilitation can assist you in regaining your independence as well as improving your overall quality of life. The severity of stroke consequences, as well as each individual’s capacity to recover, are very variable.
What’s involved in stroke rehabilitation?
There are a variety of techniques to rehabilitation following a stroke. Depending on which region of your body or which sort of skill was damaged by your stroke, your rehabilitation plan will be tailored to your specific needs. Physical activity may include the following:
- Exercises that improve motor skills. It is possible to develop your muscular strength and coordination with the use of these workouts. Therapy to improve your swallowing ability, as well as mobility exercise, may be recommended. You could learn how to utilize mobility aids such as a walker, canes, a wheelchair, or an ankle brace if you have limited mobility. Using an ankle brace, you may stabilize and strengthen your ankle, which will aid in supporting your body’s weight while you relearn how to walk
- This is known as constraint-induced treatment. While you practice moving the damaged limb to help enhance its function, an unaffected limb is restrained to prevent injury. This type of therapy is referred to as forced-use therapy or range-of-motion therapy in some circles. There are several types of workouts and therapies that can help you relieve muscular tension (spasticity) and recover range of motion.
The following are examples of technology-assisted physical activities:
- Electrical stimulation has a functional purpose. It is necessary to provide electricity to weakening muscles in order for them to contract. You could benefit from electrical stimulation to help re-educate your muscles. It is possible to use robots in your home. When injured limbs are required to make repetitive actions, robotic devices can aid them in recovering strength and function. Technology based on radio waves. An activity monitor may be beneficial in increasing your post-stroke activity. VR stands for virtual reality. It is necessary to interact with a simulated, real-time environment in order to benefit from video games and other computer-based therapies.
The following are examples of cognitive and emotional activities:
- Therapy for those suffering from cognitive impairments. Cognitive abilities such as memory, processing, problem-solving, social skills, judgment, and safety awareness can be restored through occupational therapy and speech therapy. Therapy for communication impairments can also be achieved through these methods. Speech therapy can assist you in regaining lost abilities in the areas of speaking, listening, writing, and understanding
- Psychological evaluation and treatment
- And other services. It’s possible that your emotional adjustment may be put to the test. You may also get therapy or be a member of a support group
- Medication may also be prescribed. It’s possible that your doctor will prescribe an antidepressant or a medicine that alters alertness, agitation, or movement.
The following are examples of experimental therapies:
- Stimulation of the brain that is not intrusive. The use of techniques such as transcranial magnetic stimulation in a research context to aid in the improvement of a range of motor abilities has been shown to be successful in some cases. The use of biological treatments, such as stem cells, is being researched, however they should only be utilized in conjunction with a clinical study. Medicine that is not conventional. Various treatments, including massage, herbal therapy, acupuncture, and oxygen therapy, are now being investigated.
When should stroke rehabilitation begin?
The sooner you begin stroke therapy, the more probable it is that you will be able to reclaim your lost talents and capacities. Your physicians’ urgent priority, on the other hand, are as follows:
- Maintain the stability of your medical state. Control potentially life-threatening situations
- Preventing another stroke is essential. Reduce the likelihood of any stroke-related consequences
Typically, stroke rehabilitation will begin as soon as 24 to 48 hours following your stroke, while you are still in the hospital, depending on your circumstances.
How long does stroke rehabilitation last?
The length of your stroke rehabilitation is determined by the severity of your stroke and the problems that resulted from it. Some stroke patients make a full recovery within a few days. However, the majority of people require some type of long-term stroke therapy, which might extend for months or even years following their stroke. Throughout your recovery, your stroke rehabilitation plan will evolve as you re-learn new abilities and as your needs shift and change. You may continue to make progress over time if you put in the necessary effort.
Where does stroke rehabilitation take place?
While you’re still in the hospital, you’ll most likely begin the process of stroke rehabilitation. Before you leave the hospital, you and your family will collaborate with hospital social workers and other members of your care team to establish the most appropriate rehabilitation location for you.
Your requirements, what your insurance will cover, and what is most convenient for you and your family are all factors to take into consideration. Among the alternatives are:
- Inpatient rehabilitation facilities are sometimes known as inpatient rehabilitation facilities. These facilities can be found on their own or as part of a bigger hospital or clinic complex. As part of an intense rehabilitation program, you may be required to stay at the institution for up to two to three weeks
- Outpatient units are also available. These facilities are frequently seen as a component of a hospital or clinic. Two or three hours a day, five days a week, may be all you have time for at the facility. Nursing homes with a high level of expertise. A nursing institution provides a variety of different types of care. Some facilities specialize in rehabilitation, whilst others provide less intensive therapeutic choices
- Home-based programs are also available in some instances. Having your treatment sessions at home gives you more flexibility than other choices available. One disadvantage is that you will almost certainly not have access to specialist rehabilitation equipment. In addition, insurance companies have tight rules on who is eligible for home-based therapy.
Consult with your doctor and family members to choose the best course of action for you.
Who participates in your stroke rehabilitation team?
Stroke rehabilitation is carried out by a number of different professionals. Physical requirements can be addressed by a variety of specialists, including:
- Physicians. You can get guidance from your general care physician, as well as from neurologists and physical medicine and rehabilitation experts, to ensure that you receive the best possible treatment and that problems are avoided. These physicians can also assist you in establishing and maintaining good living habits in order to avoid another stroke
- Rehabilitation nurses can also assist you. Nurses that specialize in caring for persons who have physical limitations can assist you in incorporating the new skills you’ve learned into your daily routines and routines. Physical therapists and rehabilitation nurses can both provide solutions for addressing bowel and bladder issues that result from a stroke. Occupational therapists assist you in relearning movements such as walking and maintaining your balance
- They are trained professionals. These therapists assist you in relearning how to use your hands and arms for everyday tasks such as showering, tying your shoes, and buttoning your shirt. Occupational therapists can also help you with swallowing and cognitive challenges, as well as with home safety issues.
Specialists in the areas of cognitive, emotional, and occupational abilities include the following:
- Speech and language pathologists are professionals who help people communicate better. These professionals may assist you in improving your language abilities as well as your swallowing capacity. Speech and language pathologists can also collaborate with you to design tools to address issues such as memory, thinking, and communication difficulties. Social workers are employed in a variety of capacities. Using social workers, you may connect with financial resources, make plans for new housing arrangements if necessary, and learn about available community resources. Psychologists. These specialists evaluate your reasoning abilities and provide guidance on how to address your mental and emotional health concerns. Therapists that specialize in therapeutic recreation. Following a stroke, these professionals assist you in returning to the activities and duties you liked before the stroke, such as hobbies and community involvement. Counselors in the field of vocational education. If you want to return to work, these professionals can assist you with the necessary paperwork.
What factors affect the outcome of stroke rehabilitation?
The healing from a stroke differs from person to person. It’s difficult to estimate how many skills you might regain and when you might regain them. In general, effective stroke rehabilitation is dependent on the following factors:
- Aspects of your physical health, such as the severity of your stroke in terms of both cognitive and physical consequences
- Mood and motivational elements, as well as your capacity to continue with rehabilitation exercises outside of treatment sessions, are important considerations. Social influences, such as the encouragement and support of friends and family A number of therapeutic aspects, including an early start to your recovery and the expertise of your stroke rehabilitation team, must be considered.
The pace of recovery after a stroke is often fastest in the first few weeks and months following the event. There is evidence, however, that performance can improve even 12 to 18 months after a stroke has occurred.
Stroke rehabilitation takes time
After a stroke, recovery may be a time-consuming and difficult affair. Inevitably, there will be obstacles to overcome along the path. Gaining the maximum advantage will be made possible by your dedication and commitment to strive toward progress.
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- Daroff, R.B., and colleagues Rehabilitation for neurological conditions. Bradley’s Neurology in Clinical Practice, 7th edition, is a textbook on clinical neurology. Saunders Elsevier, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
- 2016. On March 28, 2017, Bope ET, et al. were accessed. The nervous system is a mechanism that regulates bodily functions. In: Conn’s Current Therapy, published in 2017. Elsevier, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
- 2017. AskMayoExpert.com was accessed on March 28, 2017. Rehabilitation after a stroke. Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research, Rochester, Minnesota
- 2017. MJ Fu and colleagues Virtual worlds are being used in stroke recovery. Physical Medicine is a branch of medicine that focuses on the body’s physical functions. The Rehabilitation Clinics of North America published a paper in 2015 titled Rehabilitation Clinics of North America, Volume 26, Number 7, Page 747. Cunningham DA and colleagues Brain stimulation for stroke patients should be tailored to the nature of the rehabilitative therapy. Physical Medicine is a branch of medicine that focuses on the body’s physical functions. Rehabilitation Clinics of North America, Volume 26, Number 759, 2015. Natural Treatments for Stroke. accessed April 24, 2017
- Oxygen therapy. Natural Medicines. accessed April 24, 2017. On the 24th of April, 2017, I found information on stroke rehabilitation. The National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke is a federally funded research organization. The following article was found on March 28, 2017: Hoenig H. Overview of geriatric rehabilitation: Program components and rehabilitation settings. According to the most recent available information, Hoenig H. Overview of geriatric rehabilitation: Patient evaluation and typical reasons for rehabilitation. Schultz, B.A., accessed on March 28, 2017
- (expert opinion). Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minnesota
- Edwardson MA, et al. April 23, 2017
- Et al. Adults with ischemic stroke have a poor prognosis. The date of access was March 28, 2017.
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Stroke recovery timeline: What to expect
If you or someone you care about has just had a stroke, you may be feeling overwhelmed with emotion and worries about what lies ahead. We understand. However, it is likely that recuperation is at the forefront of your thoughts. There are no two strokes that are alike. Some people report feeling more like themselves after only a few days, with no long-term physical or cognitive consequences for them. Others, on the other hand, may require many months to recover or adjust to any long-term consequences.
Things such as the kind and severity of the stroke, the time between when the symptoms of the stroke were first discovered and when treatment began, prior diseases, and general health can all have an influence on therapy and the length of time it takes to recover from a stroke.
On this page, we will guide you through some of the physical and cognitive issues that can accompany a stroke. We will also provide you with a basic stroke recovery schedule to help you understand what may be ahead in the next days and months.
What to expect after a stroke: Possible physical and cognitive effects
When someone suffers from a stroke, the blood flow to their brain is either stopped or diminished. When this occurs, brain tissues are unable to receive the amount of oxygen and nutrients they require, which can result in damage. After a stroke, not everyone will have the same symptoms as the next one. The following, however, are some of the most typical physical and cognitive issues that stroke patients experience after a stroke:
- Gait and motor function are impaired. Impaired coordination and balance, or in more extreme situations, ataxia – a degenerative disorder of the neurological system – are all possible symptoms. a state of weakness or paralysis Disturbing speech or comprehending language
- Difficulty swallowing (also known as dysphagia)
- And other symptoms. Psychological and behavioral disturbances such as sadness, rage or frustration are common. Cognitive abilities that are impaired
- Abnormalities in sensory perception, such as visual issues and diminished or absent feeling in various regions of the body
Stroke recovery timeline: Day 1 to one year later (and beyond)
The length of time it takes for someone to recover after a stroke is determined by a number of factors. As previously stated, the kind and severity of the stroke, the speed with which treatment was initiated, prior problems, and general health can all have a significant influence on the outcome. Other factors, such as how fast you or your loved one may be able to begin rehabilitation, your living and working situations, and the degree of support you may expect from family and friends, can all have an impact on how quickly you or your loved one recovers from a stroke.
Day 1: Confirming a stroke diagnosis and beginning treatment
It is within the initial few minutes and hours after the onset of stroke symptoms that specific therapies have the greatest potential for reversing the damage and improving outcomes. That implies that the most important first step is to appropriately diagnose a stroke so that treatment may begin as soon as feasible. As soon as a patient arrives at the hospital, a member of the stroke team transports them to a neighboring imaging facility for a CT scan, which can aid in the diagnosis of stroke.
The diagnosis of a stroke (as well as the kind of stroke) allows for therapy to begin nearly immediately.
Step 2: Begin treatment
The kind of stroke has a role in determining how to proceed with therapy. According to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), around 87 percent of all strokes are ischemic strokes, which occur when a blood clot prevents blood flow to the brain from flowing freely. In addition to hemorrhagic strokes, which are caused by a ruptured blood artery in the brain, the remaining 13 percent of strokes are caused by other causes. A clot-busting medicine known as tissue plasminogen activator (tPA) is frequently used as the initial step in the treatment of ischemic strokes.
Medications can help stop the bleeding in hemorrhagic strokes, although surgery may also be required in some cases.
The patient has this operation in which a specific gadget is threaded through their blood veins to the spot of the blood clot that is causing the stroke. In addition to restoring blood flow, the gadget has been shown to improve patient outcomes by as much as 50 percent.
Step 3: Start the stroke recovery process
As soon as the patient is stabilized, the rehabilitation procedure for stroke victims begins. Based on the patient’s condition, the stroke care team will provide recommendations for an initial treatment and rehabilitation plan for you or your loved one. A multidisciplinary team, which may include neurologists who specialize in stroke treatment, physical therapists, occupational therapists, speech-language pathologists, and other specialists, will oversee the development of the plan. Find out more about our comprehensive stroke treatment and rehabilitation services by visiting our website.
The first week after a stroke
In many situations, stroke patients are released from the hospital to either a rehabilitation center or their place of residence within four to seven days of their hospitalization. It is dependent on the severity of the stroke and the rate at which the patient is recovering. After a stroke, care teams are focused on putting a patient’s first recovery plan into action within the first week following the event. A patient may begin one or more of the following therapy, depending on their specific requirements:
- After a stroke, physical therapy can help a patient acquire motor skills and prepare for life after a stroke. It can involve motor-skill exercises, mobility training, range-of-motion treatment, and other activities. The use of occupational therapy can help patients improve their visual and cognitive (or thinking) abilities in addition to doing guided motor-skill exercises with them. Speech therapy– Speech therapy is concerned with assisting patients in regaining their abilities to talk, communicate, and swallow after having had a stroke. Physical, cognitive, and emotional activities– Stroke rehabilitation should be geared on treating the full patient, including the mind, body, and soul. Patients who participate in cognitive and emotional activities with a mental health professional can better understand and cope with the wide variety of feelings they may be experiencing.
The first three months of recovery after a stroke
The decision to leave the hospital is a significant step in the rehabilitation process following a stroke. However, before you or your loved one is released, your care team members will collaborate to determine the most appropriate next steps in treatment and rehabilitation for you or your loved one. In addition, you will most likely meet with a social worker in the hospital to discuss your urgent next steps, which may include where to continue your stroke recovery. Many patients will be able to return home and continue their recovery with either home-based care – in which therapists come to you or your loved one – or outpatient therapy through a stroke rehabilitation center such as our own Regions Hospital Stroke Center or Methodist Stroke Center, among other facilities.
Some possibilities are as follows:
- Inpatient stroke rehabilitation– Inpatient stroke rehabilitation is an intense acute care program, with the majority of patients staying between two and three weeks in a rehabilitation facility after suffering a stroke. Patients who participate in this sort of therapy program receive treatment at least five days a week for three or more hours each day. An inpatient stroke rehabilitation program may be considered when the patient’s best interests are still served by having access to medical care around the clock, but the patient is capable of dealing with the rigors of daily, intense treatments. Regional Hospital, which is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities (CARF), provides inpatient stroke rehabilitation services. In the case of patients who require critical care but are unable to participate in daily intense treatments, skilled nursing facilities that specialize in rehabilitation are frequently advised. Therefore, patients may be coping with more significant or longer-lasting stroke symptoms as a result of their condition. A skilled nursing facility may also be advised after an inpatient program has been completed but the patient still need therapy in order to restore full capability. Therapy sessions at skilled nursing facilities run no more than two hours each day, and the typical length of stay is roughly a month. A nursing home care facility is a type of long-term, custodial care facility. Patients can still get certain therapy in a nursing home, but, when they require daily non-medical assistance with activities such as bathing, grooming, eating, medication monitoring, or mobility, they should consider nursing home care as an alternative.
The fact that many patients’ stroke recovery timelines contain more than one form of rehabilitation or treatment program is also vital to keep in mind while planning your stroke recovery timeframe. Example: A patient may begin with inpatient rehabilitation for a few weeks before transitioning to outpatient therapy and finally home-based therapy. Many stroke patients have finished at least one rehabilitation program and may be continuing with one or more therapies at home within the first six months after being discharged from the hospital, depending on which rehab program route was chosen after being discharged from the hospital.
However, just because a patient has gone home does not imply that they are no longer in need of stroke treatment.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, one in every four strokes occurs in persons who have previously had a stroke. That is why it is critical to create connections with primary care physicians as well as specialists who can provide continuous treatment, such as the following:
- A vascular neurologist is a type of neurology that specializes in the treatment of strokes and other types of cerebrovascular illnesses. In addition to diagnosing and treating strokes when a patient is admitted to the hospital, they can also provide post-stroke care. A primary care doctor– Primary care doctors are specialists in preventive health, chronic disease management, and the diagnosis and treatment of hundreds of illnesses, ranging from allergies to the common cold to skin rashes. They are also experts in chronic disease management. They can assist in the management and monitoring of stroke risk factors. The services of a mental health professional– A stroke is a life-altering occurrence that affects many people. Additionally, the healing process can be emotionally draining and discouraging. A mental health expert, such as a psychologist, can assist patients in coping with anxiety, depression, and other problems or long-term repercussions of a stroke
- This includes:
Many stroke patients have finished their rehabilitation therapy programs by the time they reach the one-year mark following their stroke. Certain may have returned to their former selves, while others may be adjusting to some new limits and continuing specific rehabilitation approaches at their place of residence. However, rehabilitation from a stroke is a long-term process. Taking advantage of local stroke support groups is one method to ensure that the healing process continues. Those who participate in these groups are part of a community of individuals who understand what it’s like to be affected by a stroke and who can offer understanding, support, and even a little inspiration when it’s most needed.
Every step the stroke care team takes begins the moment you or a loved one arrives at the hospital with the goal of promoting healing and recovery in mind.
A stroke has the potential to alter one’s life.
Find out more about our comprehensive stroke therapy and care for neurological illnesses by visiting our website.
Stroke Recovery Timeline: How Long Does It Take to Recover?
After a stroke, how long does it take for you to recover? This is a frequently asked issue by both survivors and caregivers, and the answer is difficult to say the least. Your stroke recovery timetable will be different from that of other stroke survivors because everyone’s rate of recovery is varied from one another. Although it is hard to predict how long a person will be out of commission following a stroke, this article will offer an outline of some frequent patterns and milestones to look out for.
- After a stroke, how long does it take for a person to recover? Factors that influence your individual stroke recovery time include: Milestones in the Stroke Recovery Timeline
- See how other survivors are faring at various stages of their recovery. Stroke recovery is a lengthy process.
How Long Does It Take To Recover From A Stroke?
A stroke occurs when the flow of blood to the brain is impaired, either by a blocked artery (known as an ischemic stroke) or a burst artery (known as a transient ischemic attack or TIEA) (called a hemorrhagic stroke). When this occurs, the damaged part of the brain does not receive sufficient amounts of oxygen-rich blood to function properly. This is why prompt treatment is critical to halting a stroke, restoring blood supply to the brain, and saving a life if one has occurred. The length of time it takes to recover from a stroke is dependent on a variety of factors, including the size and location of the stroke, as well as your age and overall health previous to the stroke.
In general, recovery from mild strokes is more rapid than recovery from strokes that have affected bigger parts of the brain, according to research.
It’s tough to determine for sure, however. As a result, specialists are frequently heard remarking, “Every stroke is different, and consequently every recovery will be distinct.”
Factors That Impact Your Unique Stroke Recovery Time
Several things should be considered if you are interested in learning more about your prospective stroke recovery timeline: the magnitude and location of the stroke. With regard to the severity of the stroke, if it is a minor one, the brain damage may be modest, and as a result, recovery is generally faster. When a stroke is considered substantial (as indicated by a high score on the National Institutes of Health Stroke Scale), recovery may take longer and need more rigorous efforts. A stroke can occur anywhere in the brain, and it can damage many distinct parts of the brain.
- As a result, the severity of the secondary effects will vary depending on the section of the brain that has been affected.
- However, a person who has had a right hemisphere stroke may experience very distinct after consequences.
- Additionally, your age and overall health prior to having a stroke might have an impact on how long it takes you to recover.
- As you progress through your recovery and rehabilitation, it might be beneficial to have a broad understanding of what to expect (roughly speaking) and what milestones may be reached.
Stroke Recovery Timeline Milestones
The fact that everyone’s stroke recovery schedule will be different should be stressed again. For example, even when two people have a stroke in the same area of the brain, the time it takes them to recover might differ significantly. One left hemisphere stroke survivor may suffer with the inability to communicate at all, whilst another may battle solely with the recall of words from memory. The amount of time it takes to recover from such a wide range of impairments may vary substantially. Having said that, it might be beneficial to be aware of some trends in the healing timeframe following a stroke.
Day 1: The Stroke Is Treated
A stroke is a medical emergency that requires immediate attention. As time passes without intervention, more and more brain cells become deprived of oxygen-rich blood, resulting in brain damage and death. The person’s life will be saved if he or she receives prompt treatment to halt the stroke. Initially, it is probable that you will be admitted to an emergency room to allow your condition to be stabilized while you await further treatment. It is possible to offer medication after the kind of stroke has been determined (ischemic versus hemorrhagic).
- After a stroke has been treated, the patient can begin rehabilitation right away.
- In order to take advantage of the brain’s increased neuroplasticity while also minimizing the muscular atrophy that occurs as a result of hospitalization, rehabilitation should begin as soon as possible.
- This technique enables healthy areas of the brain to take up the functions that have been compromised as a result of a stroke.
- The process of spontaneous recovery, which occurs in the early phases of recovery, increases the amount of neuroplasticity in the brain.
This term refers to improvements that emerge unexpectedly, usually during the early phases of recovery when the brain is attempting to mend from injury at breakneck speed.
Week 1-3: Discharge from the Hospital
Depending on the severity of your stroke and the number of medical issues that arise, you will most likely stay in the acute care hospital for anywhere from 1-3 weeks at the most. During your hospitalization, you will be surrounded by a knowledgeable team of professionals who will examine your illness as well as any secondary consequences that you may have suffered, such as physical or cognitive impairments. Your medical team will pay special attention to whether or not you are able to care for yourself on your own and whether or not you are capable of carrying out the activities of daily life on your own (such as using the toilet, dressing, and walking short distances).
After being discharged from the hospital, you may be able to continue your rehabilitation at one of the following facilities, depending on your abilities:
- Inpatient rehabilitation institution: If you believe you will benefit from (and can handle) engaging in three hours of treatment each day, you may be able to continue your recovery at an inpatient rehabilitation facility. For admission into one of these facilities, you must have major functional deficiencies but also demonstrate potential for progress, as well as the ability to get post-discharge help if you require it. The recovery process in a subacute rehabilitation center can be expedited if you require a lesser level of therapy (1-2 hours of therapy per day) and wish to continue your recovery there. A skilled care facility, for example, would fall under this category. Patient-centered outpatient therapy: After being discharged from the hospital or rehabilitation facility, many patients continue their therapy by attending a clinic as required
1-3 Months: Notable Recovery Should Occur
During the first three months after your recuperation, you should notice a significant improvement in your condition. The brain is still in a state of high plasticity throughout this period, which indicates that rehabilitation has a greater impact during this period. During this early period, there is also the possibility of spontaneous recovery. Results frequently slow down and plateau after the first three months of your stroke recovery timeline, which is known as a plateau. At this time, the majority of survivors have returned home and are continuing their rehabilitation on their own or in outpatient treatment.
- In reality, healing can last for many years as long as the survivor maintains a consistent commitment to therapy.
- It’s also crucial to maintain a healthy lifestyle at home in between outpatient therapy appointments.
- There are home treatment programs, such as Flint Rehab’s FitMiare, that are specifically developed to assist with this.
- This is because the brain receives the stimulus it need to repair.
6 Months: Gait Improves in Most Stroke Survivors
If you are experiencing a stroke recovery timetable progression, you will reach your personal milestones at your own pace. Recovery of one’s capacity to walk is a common milestone that many cancer survivors look forward to (if your walking was impaired by the stroke). By the time you reach the 6-month mark, the outlook is generally bright provided you participate in regular therapy. A recent study found that around 65-85 percent of stroke patients will be able to walk freely after six months of therapy.
At this time, it is vital to remember that spontaneous recuperation has most certainly come to an end.
Functional recovery is possible for the rest of one’s life, which is a blessing. Recovery can continue as long as the individual continues to participate in rehabilitation activities.
2 Years: Recovery Looks Increasingly Different for Everyone
As of this writing, it is difficult to predict where any individual victim will be on their recovery path after two years of treatment and therapy. Some may have completely regained function, while others may still be in the process of regaining it. In one encouraging figure, stroke patients who were unable to walk without help at the 6-month point should be able to do so by the 2-year mark in 74 percent of the cases. This is a compelling argument for continuing to participate in rehabilitation.
5 Years and Beyond: Functional Recovery Can Continue
With the passage of time, healing continues to manifest itself differently for each individual. Whatever your specific secondary effects are, and how regularly you participate in therapy, the outcome is up to you. The results of one study, which followed stroke patients for five years, revealed that “the level of functional and motor performance at five years after stroke was equal to the level tested at two months.” However, while this may appear to be bad news, there is an essential lesson that you may take away from this experience.
It’s possible that many of the survivors in that research quit engaging in rehab completely once they were discharged from inpatient rehabilitation.
This is where home rehabilitation programs may be quite beneficial, especially because formal therapies at a facility this far away from the stroke site are rarely covered by insurance.
See How Other Survivors Are Doing at Different Stages
The fact that every stroke is unique, and therefore every recovery is unique, should be emphasized once more. The situation of one survivor at the 5-year mark will be vastly different from that of another. In spite of this, seeing how others are doing at various points in their own individual stroke recovery timelines may be quite inspirational. The following are some inspiring stories of stroke survivors who have persevered in their quest for recovery years after their diagnosis. Videos from our very own FitMi home treatment users, who uploaded videos to assist others see how far they have come in their recovery.
Anthony: 1 Year Post-Stroke
Meet Anthony, a stroke victim who suffered left-side paralysis (hemiplegia) as a result of his injury. After three months, he began using FitMi as his home workout regimen, and he has seen significant improvements. He continues to have difficulty with hand movement, which can take much longer to recover from than the arm or leg. Hand function, on the other hand, can continue to improve with regular rehabilitation efforts.
Mary: 2 Years Post-Stroke
Let me introduce you to Mary, a stroke survivor who spent five weeks in a coma following her stroke. She is a shining example of how to recover from adversity, even when the situation seemed hopeless at the beginning.
Mary suffered right-side paralysis (hemiplegia) and was hospitalized for a further 5 weeks before being released to go home. A plateau appeared to have occurred after two years of constant home exercise. She overcame this obstacle by continuing her home exercise regimen.
Carol: 3.5 Years Post-Stroke
Meet Carolyn, a stroke victim who overcome paralysis on her right side of the body. After being discharged from inpatient rehabilitation, she continued to benefit from FitMi home treatment to maintain her progress at home. She is now able to drive, ride her bike, and travel with confidence as a result of this experience.
Becky: 11 Years Post-Stroke
Meet Becky, a brain stem stroke survivor who has been in remission for over a decade and counting. Strokes to the brain stem can result in a condition known as locked-in syndrome, in which the person is virtually paralyzed except for the ability to blink. Becky has gone a long way in her battle to regain mobility after becoming paralyzed. She exemplifies what is achievable in today’s world.
Stroke Recovery Takes Time
We hope that this article has provided you with the understanding and encouragement you require to continue your recovery. Some factors, such as your age and the size and location of your stroke, will have an impact on your individual stroke recovery timetable. These factors include your age and the size and location of your stroke. However, there are numerous variables that you may influence, such as how frequently you participate in home rehabilitation. At the end of the day, survivors who believe in themselves and pursue therapy on a continuous basis make the most significant strides forward.
Wishing you the best of luck on your journey to recovery.
Rehab Therapy After a Stroke
Stroke is the fifth highest cause of death in the United States and the largest cause of long-term adult disability, claiming the lives of more than 795,000 individuals annually. Few people are prepared for this unexpected, and often disastrous, catastrophe, but the recovery rates have been encouraging. In other circumstances, brain cell loss is just transient, and the brain’s ability to function can be restored over time. It is also possible for the brain to rearrange its own functioning, and an area of the brain “takes over” for a section of the brain that has been injured by a stroke.
- Ten percent of stroke survivors make a complete or near-complete recovery. Approximately 10% of the population need long-term care at a nursing home or other long-term care institution
- The recovery rate is around one-quarter percent with modest limitations.
- The majority (40 percent) suffer from moderate to severe disabilities.
The long-term objective of rehabilitation is to assist the stroke survivor in regaining as much independence as possible after the stroke. This should be done in a manner that preserves the survivor’s dignity while motivating him or her to relearn basic skills such as bathing, eating, dressing, and walking again. Following a stroke, most people begin their rehabilitation in the hospital. If your health is stable, you can begin rehabilitation as soon as two days after the stroke and continue it after you are discharged from the hospital, if necessary.
- • a hospital-based rehabilitation unit that provides inpatient therapy
- A subacute care unit
- A rehabilitation hospital with individualized inpatient therapy
- And a long-term care facility. Therapy in the comfort of one’s own home
- Outpatient therapy in the comfort of one’s own home
- A long-term care facility that offers therapy as well as skilled nursing care.
Your recovery team
A team of specialists will design your rehabilitation program to assist you in achieving your stroke recovery objectives. Some of the members of this squad may be as follows: A physiatrist is a medical professional who specializes in the rehabilitation of patients who have suffered injuries, accidents, or illnesses. Stroke and other illnesses of the brain and spinal cord are treated by neurologists who are experts in the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of these conditions. Rehabilitation nurse – assists persons with disabilities and stroke survivors in managing health conditions such as diabetes and high blood pressure, as well as adjusting to life after undergoing a stroke.
Occupational therapists assist with the development of methods for managing daily tasks such as eating, bathing, dressing, writing, and cooking.
Dieticians educate survivors on good eating habits and particular diets that are limited in salt, fat, and calories, among other things.
Neuropsychologist – a professional who identifies and treats cancer survivors who are experiencing changes in their thinking, memory, and behavior.
Recreational Therapist is a term used to describe a person who works in the field of recreation.
Written by the editorial team of the American Heart Association and evaluated by scientific and medicine advisors. See our editorial policies and staff for more information.