TIA's and anti-coagulants

Hi, not really related to AF but hope you don't mind me asking this question. My mother-in-law has had what seems clearly to be a TIA, she could not speak (for some minutes I believe). This happened a few weeks ago. She has high blood pressure and takes pills for this, and her BP is being controlled. She went with my wife to the GP about the TIA, who said that the risk of a stroke was being controlled by the BP pills, so no need for anything else. This surprised me.

As far as I am aware there are no other conditions. She is in her mid-80's and otherwise very fit and "young". Typically, the females in her family go on happily till they're about 100.

I would have thought she needs to be, or at least should be considered for anti-coagulation. But not sure!

Any thoughts/experience?

Many thanks

Koll

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7 Replies

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  • Sorry Koll, Whilst it does sound logical I'm not an expert on these matters I do know that bleed risk increases with age so it may be that this is an issue. I think a good idea would be a visit to the local stroke unit for assessment.. Don't take your GPs word for it ask for a second opinion.

    Bob

  • Thanks Bob. I think asking for a 2nd opinion is a good idea. I'll speak to my wife about it. Koll

  • Not sure how this is applied to a patient of that age but normally I would expect an ultrasound scan of the carotid arteries and also perhaps an MRI of the brain too. Blood thinners is however good move as well and lowering the bp.

  • Hi Koll, you know how it is, sometimes I feel that the minimum gets done because everyone is so busy, and you need to focus them yourself. I think a proper assessment sounds like a very good idea. I hope she feels better soon.

    Lis

  • Yesterday, I had my 5th TIA since February, normal stuff i.e. disturbed vision - pixilation- speech/comprehension - headache, lasting for roughly 30 minutes. I have had a CAT scan and Doppler ultrasound, both clear, and had my anticoagulant changed from Warfarin to Pradaxa and now wondering what I should do. The instruction from the Stroke Doctor was to call an ambulance but as these are fleeting episodes I don't, whether I am doing the right thing or not I don't know. I also don't know how many of these damned things I shall have and it is a worry, any advice would be appreciated. I have PAF and a Pacemaker, had a stroke in 2000 and 73 years of age.

  • I'm a farmer not a doctor, so don't listen to me! But speaking personally, I would definitely call an ambulance if I or any of my family had a possible TIA. We didn't with my mother-in-law because she didn't mention it for ages. After 3 years she hasn't another that we know about, and she doesn't want to be anticoagulated.

    But my father-in-law just had a TIA as well, a few weeks ago. We called an ambulance within a couple of hours (at first we didn't realise what it was as the syptoms weren't exactly as expected). He was taken immediately to a stroke unit and scanned which I think was to confirm that it wasn't a bleed, so then they knew what they were dealing with. He was kept in the stroke unit for a 2/3 weeks and he's now been discharged and he's fine.

    He is on Apixaban low dosage (he's 92).

    All the best.

    Koll

  • thank you Koll, I have to admit thats the thing I worry about, a bleed, I believe the anticoagulant does indeed take care of any blood clots forming and already having had a stroke have made myself aware however I don't know much about a bleed and that makes me anxious

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