Transient Ischemic Attack: Essential Things One Needs to Know

April 2021

A transient ischemic attack (TIA) is often a warning sign for a future stroke. It can also be an isolated event that does not presage a future stroke. TIAs are caused by temporary interruption of blood flow to the brain, often because a clot has formed in one of the blood vessels supplying the brain. They are not associated with lasting effects.


The symptoms of a transient ischemic attack vary based on the area affected in the brain, but may include:


A transient ischemic attack can last from a few minutes to 24 hours or longer. The effects of TIAs vary greatly based on the location and extent of damage to the brain. Some people experience minor side effects that last less than an hour, while others may develop severe injuries that cause permanent changes in their behavioral patterns. These injuries typically affect speech and motor coordination. In rare cases, TIAs may even cause death. In most cases, however, symptoms resolve themselves without further harm to the sufferer's body or brain structures.


Transient ischemic attacks are caused by tiny clots or pieces of fatty plaque blocking some of the brain's blood vessels, preventing blood from reaching that part of the brain. This lack of oxygen to the brain causes the symptoms typically associated with a transient ischemic attack. While a transient ischemic attack may cause permanent damage in some cases, most TIAs do not result in lasting harm to a person's physical health following recovery. Most people who have experienced an episode of TIA never suffer another one.


A transient ischemic attack may be caused by many different factors: Most cases, however, have no known cause. Risk factors for transient ischemic attack include: Most of the risk factors for TIA are components of risk factors for stroke.


A transient ischemic attack (TIA) is an episode of neurological symptoms due to a brief interruption in the blood supply to the brain. It's often called a "mini-stroke" or "warning stroke."


A transient ischemic attack affects your body and mind in different ways, so it's good to know what you can expect before one happens. A Transient Ischemic Attack (TIA) is also called a TIA, mini-stroke, or warning stroke. It's similar to a stroke, but it's usually not as serious. TIA symptoms can be mild or severe and usually last only for a few minutes or hours.


There are many possible causes of TIAs, but they are often linked to brain blood vessel diseases that increase stroke risk, like atherosclerosis of carotid artery disease.  If you have signs of TIAs or other stroke risk factors that haven't been treated recently, your doctor may recommend an immediate medical evaluation.


Classification of TIA:



  1. crescendo TIA and the ictus (accentuated TIA)

  2. embolism of TIAs (embolic TIA)

  3. transient ischemic attacks of the territory (hemispheric) without infarction of brain blood vessels (cerebral ischemia). Occur when intracranial emboli are deposited in brain blood vessels, causing cerebral arterial spasm and increased sensitivity to external factors, which leads to a decrease in perfusion pressure vascular territory.


TIA with a rupture of an atheromatous plaque in the carotid artery or its branches and accompanying formation of cerebral emboli



  1. transient ischemic attacks caused by local factors (including migraine, cluster headache, etc.).


Symptoms of TIAs:



  1. sensory disturbances – numbness, paresthesia;

  2. motor disorders – weakness, clumsiness (including hemiparesis);

  3. language disturbance – aphasia;  aphasic or Dysarthria (slurred speech);  speech disorders;  


Transient ischemic attacks are commonly misdiagnosed, as symptoms can be similar to those of common illnesses such as a cold or the flu, including fever, cough and chills. This in turn may lead to a delay in treatment (as the TIA may be mistaken for an infection) which can allow a build-up of damage to vital areas. In cases where other symptoms are present (especially if they persist), TIAs may be more easily diagnosed and treated.

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