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The microwave helmet that could save your life

Written by Diane Archer
Almost 130,000 people in the U.S. die each year from a stroke—when the blood supply to the brain is cut off or a blood vessel in the brain bursts.  And, almost 800,000 people suffer a stroke.  Treatment has a higher likelihood of counteracting brain damage when doctors know whether patients suffered from a bleeding stroke and clot-induced stroke. And the microwave helmet, Strokefinder, answers that question.

The microwaves in the Strokefinder helmet read your brain tissue to determine the kind of stroke you have with great certainty.  Ideally, ambulances will use the Strokefinder so that doctors are prepared to treat the patient appropriately upon arrival in the Emergency Room.  Today, doctors must first do a CAT scan to determine the type of stroke, delaying treatment and likely leading to greater brain damage.

The Strokefinder is not yet ready for prime time.  It’s still being tested.  But, it’s another tool for improving outcomes for stroke patients. As it is many stroke patients suffer from paralysis or weakness to one side of their body. And, strokes are the fourth leading cause of death. In the meantime, if you think someone is suffering a stroke, call 911 immediately.  Getting that person to the emergency room as quickly as possible offers the best chance of minimizing disability and death.

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Know the signs of stroke


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