All squares are rectangles, but…..

A baseball player recently collapsed during a game and it was revealed the next day that it was due to a brain hemorrhage.  My husband asked me what the difference is between a brain hemorrhage and a stroke.  Well, a brain hemorrhage IS a stroke.  It’s all semantics.  I started this blog a few years before I met Pat.  My muse for creating the blog was my own arrogance, thinking that I knew anything because of my medical knowledge.  Since the year 2014, he has been my muse for most posts.  Most ideas have come from a conversation that I had with him.  He then apologized for asking that question, and asking me to explain something having to do with a stroke thinking that it might upset me.  It’s cool, I like that I have a whole bunch of medical knowledge and I like being able to explain things like this, it’s the fact that this knowledge overlaps with my personal medical history that is the f’ed up part.

A hemorrhage means that a bunch of blood was found where it isn’t supposed to be. If it happens in the brain area, it’s a stroke.  That’s going to kill some brain matter and that, my friend, is a stroke.  So I explained it to him this way, “all brain hemorrhages are strokes, but not all strokes are brain hemorrhages.”  My main stroke, for instance, was caused by a blood clot that decided to take a journey to my brain and get lodged in an artery up there.  But, not to worry, I got to experience the other type of stroke about a week later when I was given too much heparin(blood thinner) which caused a brain hemorrhage.  Thanks, docs.  So, it’s the CAUSE that is the important thing to know.  He then asked about a brain aneurysm.  A brain aneurysm means that a weak blood vessel in the brain burst, causing a brain hemorrhage, which is a type of stroke.

He asked if this baseball player could have life-long consequences and disabilities like I do.  The answer – oh yes, I’d be surprised if this man returns to professional baseball.  He had a stroke.  They are just calling it a ‘brain hemorrhage’ right now.  The word ‘stroke’ scares the hell out of people.  And rightly so.  He said “ok, so it’s like saying that all squares are rectangles, but not all rectangles are squares.”  Yep, just like that.



Categories: Brain stuff, Health, Stroke stuff

Tags: ,

14 replies

  1. I also started my blog because I thought I had something useful to say about stroke. Now it is just catharsis for me.

  2. I saw the article on the pitcher and thought, he had a stroke. What is the matter with people, STROKE is not a dirty word (although some of us survivors think otherwise). It’s not like an STD brought him down, it wasn’t drugs. If he had been hit in the head and then suffered a “Brain Hemorrhage”

    This young athlete in great shape has this very scary situation. Hopefully his therapy will help him find his way back to so normalcy.

  3. Most norms are scardy cats when it comes to people they idolize. Strokes are scary to those who have never experienced them, but for us survivor’s it’s just life.

    Whatever the inspiration, I’m glad you are posting again.

  4. Amy, I had a brain hemorhage 9 years ago.I still am recovering.At the time of my stroke I was a senior executivein a big corporation.I returned to work about 2 months after the stroke although I couldn’t travel as I had so I worked developing content for our Facebook page.Then I went to work at the company my husband and I own. So even though so much time passed, I didn’t consider the time lost as I just kept on going in my life. Because I chose to focus on living my life, I had limited therapy time, so I probably shortchanged my physical recovery a bit.Again a choice, not one I regret but I don’t look back only forward, but that’s me. I have regained my emotional balance, stamina and am basically the same person but with a gimpy walk and a non functioning left hand. I have survived though and even thrived

  5. Reblogged this on Random and Sundry Things and commented:
    I love this explanation! 🙂

  6. Great post! My hemorrhagic stroke was also caused by a clot. Most articles assume that a clot can cause an ischemic stroke, but that’s not always true. Mine was a CVST (Cerebral Venous Sinus Thrombosis) . A clot in an artery can stop blood from entering the brain (usually ischemic, but not always, as you described. A clot in a vein can stop blood from exiting the brain, but a vein will expand in size (unlike an artery) to accomodate the clot until it bursts, causing a hemorrhagic stroke.

    I like the analogy of the squares and rectangles.

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