Recently, a 24-year-old youth suffered from a brain stroke and was declared brain-dead at Wockhardt Hospital. But, this is not a rare occurrence as city neurologists have observed an upsurge in brain stroke among youngsters in the last few years.
Today, people as young as 18 suffer from brain stroke and neurologists blame unhealthy lifestyle for it.
Dr Nirmal Surya, Neurologist at Bombay Hospital, says he recently operated on an 18-year-old boy who suffered a massive brain stroke.
“This boy was a chain-smoker since he was 14 years old and when he came to me he had suffered a massive brain stroke, along with a paralysis on left hand. Today’s generation has a strong attraction to unhealthy lifestyle and it is making them more prone to diseases like strokes,” said Surya.
Neurologists explained that brain strokes in young adults are generally caused due to factors such as developing blood pressure early in life, diabetes, obesity, extensive smoking and excessive consumption of alcohol as well as junk food.
“Stroke is a serious disease and it is becoming more common among Indians and Asians. Vitamin B12 is very important to the body, but its presence is very less in Asians. Though there is not a specific reason for brain stroke, there are multiple risk factors one,” added Surya.
Dr PP Ashok, Consultant and Head of Neurology at PD Hinduja Hospital, give an interesting perspective on unhealthy eating and explains the difference between food consumption in India and western countries.
“When you look at the western countries, the rich people there eat a healthy diet like salads, soups and it is the poor who consume unhealthy foods like burgers and pizzas. But, in India, maximum numbers of people, irrespective of their socio-economic background, consume unhealthy food,” Ashok said.
In young people, when they get cardiovascular disease, it primarily affects their blood vessels and so, it becomes extremely important to control it.
“We need to aggressively fight this metabolic syndrome and avoid eating junk food, going for late night parties and drinking alcohol regularly,” Ashok added.
Neurologists caution younger generation for not taking a stroke seriously. They said many times, youngsters go for check-ups at local clinics, but they rarely diagnose the stroke, which can be dangerous.
“There is a need of telemedicine and patients need to understand the symptoms. Life can be saved if clot busters are given to the patient within 3-4 hours of onset of stroke for reversing the disease,” added Ashok.