Cerebellar Stroke: Symptoms, Causes, and Treatment

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If left untreated, a cerebellar stroke can cause your brain to swell or bleed. These complications can lead to further damage to your cerebellum and other areas of your brain. If a cerebellar stroke affects your brain stem, your breathing, heartbeat, and blood pressure could also be affected.

A cerebellar stroke is often caused by a blood clot that obstructs blood flow to the cerebellum. Blood clots can form in your blood vessels or travel from other parts of the body — such as the heart or the neck — until it becomes trapped in blood vessels leading to the cerebellum.

A cerebellar stroke can also be the result of head trauma or hemorrhage that causes blood to pool in a portion of your brain. A brain hemorrhage can cause pressure to build in your brain and interrupt regular blood flow.

There are a number of factors that can increase your risk of having a cerebellar stroke. Risk factors that could lead to a blood clot or obstruction include:

Before recommending treatment, your doctor will conduct a thorough evaluation of your medical history and examine your symptoms. Accurately diagnosing the condition is crucial to help rule out other brain conditions or issues that could lead to recurrent strokes.

Your doctor will use imaging tests to see if there’s any brain bleeding or injury. These tests can include a CT scan and MRI.

An MRI may be the first recommended procedure. It can more accurately display the cerebellum than a CT scan. This is because the cerebellum is surrounded by bone and is located at the back of your brain.

Other procedures your doctor may use to help them diagnose your condition include:

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