They span all the problems where the blood vessels that irrigate the brain are affected. Apoplexy is the most serious disorder because nearly 30% of the population dies due to it. There are several causes that bring on an apoplexy:
– The interruption of blood supply to the brain: this causes the neurons to not receive oxygen and the nutrients they need. When this doesn’t happen, the neurons are damaged and incapable of communicating with the parts of the body they benefit, causing temporary or permanent loss of functions. This cause is the most recurrent among older adults.
– Extravasation: it is the leakage of blood by its normal conduit (blood vessels) in the surface of the brain or the deepest part of its tissue. This leak disturbs the normal operation because it compresses and swells the tissue. It is more frequent in young people.
– Formation of a blood clot or thrombus: it begins with the accumulation of fatty deposits within arterial walls, compressing the blood vessel and stimulating the formation of a clot of thrombus. This is called thrombosis. In the case of a clot blocking an artery of the brain, an apoplexy attack is produced.
– By embolus: In this case, the blockage of a brain artery, which produces an apoplexy, can be caused by a fragment of material (embolus) that has traveled with the blood flow, lodging itself into a vessel. The embolus can be part of a clot from the arteriosclerotic arteries of the neck or heart. The blockage of tiny vessels (which are the ones that reach the deepest places of the brain) is another alteration of the blood vessels, potentially leading to localized blocks known as lagoon attacks, which have some type of dementia as a result. These blocks may be caused by high blood pressure or diabetes. Another disturbance, common and known, are migraines (see inset) which do not cause loss of cerebral functions.