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Posted On August 12, 2016 Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What Are Cerebrovascular Accidents?

What you need to know about cerebral accidents and failure to diagnose stroke cases

If a doctor said that you or a loved one experienced a cerebrovascular accident, you might be confused.

It’s very possible that you weren’t in an accident – the kind you usually think of, anyway – at all. No car crash, no workplace injury, no fall. Just sudden and worrying symptoms that had your family rushing to the emergency room.

“Cerebrovascular accident” is a medical term for what’s more commonly called a stroke. And while it may not be the type of accident that first comes to your mind, this serious health condition may have more in common with crashes, falls, and other severe mishaps than you would think.

Preventable Strokes

The vast majority – up to 90 percent – of all strokes are preventable.

Last month, medical journal The Lancet published new research into stroke risk factors. What researchers found is that a group of 10 risk factors that can be changed contributed to 90 percent of strokes studied worldwide.

You can’t change your genetics, your gender, your race, or your age. But you can change the factors that are among the biggest culprits in causing strokes, according to researchers. You can increase your physical activity. You can take steps to manage your blood pressure.

When it comes to stroke prevention, knowledge is power. But what if your doctor is negligently failing to monitor your health conditions, leaving you at risk of an avoidable and devastating medical emergency?

Emergency room sign

Can Accident Injuries Cause Strokes?

For some patients, a collision or other kind of accident caused the cerebrovascular accident. This is particularly common among younger stroke victims, especially those under age 50.

A stroke can happen without a physical trauma triggering it. But sustaining an injury to the head or neck can increase your stroke risk, according to the American Academy of Neurology.


It’s possible, National Public Radio (NPR) reported, that a head injury can damage “blood vessels in the brain, making them more vulnerable” to developing the clots that cause most strokes.

Personal Injury Claims for Cerebrovascular Accidents

Here’s another factor strokes and accidents have in common: if someone else’s negligence caused the event, you have the legal right to hold that person responsible.

Of course, if your stroke followed a severe head injury that resulted from a motor vehicle accident or a slip and fall, you could have a case against the person who caused that incident.

But there’s also a type of medical malpractice claim you should look into when a stroke has affected your family’s life. In the legal world, we call these failure to diagnose stroke claims.

Through these cases, medical malpractice lawyers hold doctors accountable for misdiagnosing or delaying the diagnosis of a stroke.

Often, failure to diagnose stroke cases result from emergency room doctors dismissing patients who have stroke symptoms. They might be negligent by:

  • Failing to perform tests
  • Failing to correctly interpret the results
  • Carelessly sending the patient home without offering help

And, because early treatment is so important for preventing stroke damage, even a minor delay can have devastating consequences.

Whether you were the victim of a cerebrovascular accident yourself or you’re caring for a loved one left disabled by a stroke, the situation can be difficult in many ways. If you’re wondering whether a negligent doctor made the damage from the stroke worse, let us help. We’ll go over your family’s legal options and help you find out the truth about what caused the stroke.