Cold can increase stroke risk; know the symptoms and how to prevent yourself – News

Temperature drops during fall and winter can increase the occurrence of stroke by up to 20%, according to the National Institute of Cardiology.

This happens because the feeling of cold raises blood pressure, one of the main causes of the problem, according to neurosurgeon Feres Chaddad, from Beneficência Portuguesa in São Paulo.

“To maintain body temperature, skin vessels enter vasoconstriction, that is, they decrease blood concentration to prevent heat loss. This increases systemic blood pressure, [por isso] vascular pathologies tend to be more easily manifested during cold weather”, explains the doctor.

Prevention for this type of problem, however, does not occur immediately only during these seasons, but with the maintenance of healthy habits throughout life, as the specialist highlights. Patients with heart problems are also at increased risk.

“The ideal is to practice physical activities and go to the doctor regularly, to control blood pressure and avoid the natural risk of high pressure”, says Chaddad.

Smoking and physical inactivity are some of the factors that increase the predisposition to the occurrence of stroke, as well as high cholesterol, diabetes, hypertension, excessive alcohol consumption, the use of illicit drugs and advanced age. In addition, the Ministry of Health highlights that being male is also a factor that increases this risk.

It is worth noting that, with the reduction in deaths from Covid-19, Stroke and heart attack are once again the main causes of death in Brazilaccording to data from the Transparency Portal of Civil Registry Offices in Brazil.


Stroke can be divided into two groups: hemorrhagic and ischemic. The first results from a hemorrhage caused by the rupture of a cerebral vessel; the second type, which represents 85% of cases, can be caused by the death of brain cells due to obstruction of an artery, thrombosis or embolism.

The neurosurgeon points out that a stroke can occur, initially, with mild symptoms and then progress to a more severe condition, or manifest itself in an acute form.

“A stroke is characterized by a deficit that indicates a brain impairment or a neurological deficit, whether motor, with decreased strength in an arm or leg, a loss of vision [em um ou nos dois olhos] or [quando o] patient begins to lower consciousness,” explains Chaddad.

In addition, symptoms such as weakness and tingling on only one side of the body — whether in the face, arms or legs — changes in speech or understanding, and sudden headache with no apparent cause can be signs of a stroke.

“If the person is going to pick up a glass and they cannot hold it properly because they are suddenly losing strength, that is a sign of a stroke. [Na presença de] any of these clinical manifestations [citadas anteriormente]the person should seek a doctor immediately, because the symptom can evolve”, says the specialist.

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