Doctors at City Children’s Hospital use digital subtraction angiography to locate a blocked blood vessel in the brain of a three-year-old girl diagnosed with a stroke. Photo courtesy of the hospital’s Facebook page
HCM CITY— A three-year-old girl from An Giang Province in the Mekong Delta region was admitted last month to City Children’s Hospital in HCM City’s Bình Chánh District after experiencing headaches, weakness and vomiting.
Her parents had taken her to the local hospital but within two days she suffered paralysis on the right side of her body.
She was transferred to City Children's Hospital in HCM City, and after tests and a CT scan, doctors detected a blood clot in brain and she had suffered a stroke.
They used digital subtraction angiography that provides images of the blood vessels in the brain to detect and remove the blood clot.
Two hours after intervention, her blocked artery was open. She recovered and is now walking, and is expected to be discharged from the hospital in a few days, according to doctors.
The hospital’s doctors said that stroke is one of the leading causes of deaths worldwide, but recognition of the problem is low. its syndromes are often misdiagnosed for other common conditions.
In the girl's case, the local hospital's doctors had misdiagnosed the cause and said that she had meningitis.
Last year, a five-year-old boy was also hospitalised at City Children’s Hospital because of a stroke which had caused facial numbness and sudden convulsion.
The hospital’s doctors treated the boy in time and his movement and language improved.
According to the hospital, stroke among children is rare but deadly. Only a few children aged 2 to 5 have been admitted to the City Children's Hospital with a stroke.
A 12-year-old student at Trường Chinh Secondary School in HCM City’s District 12 was not as lucky. He suddenly lost consciousness at school and was brought to a hospital in the city for treatment. But he died of a stroke.
Dr Lê Trọng Nghĩa of City International Hospital, told Việt Nam News that patients with stroke should be brought to the hospital for treatment "as soon as possible to avoid damage to the brain”.
Timely treatment could help the brain area that lacks blood to recover, Nghĩa said.
Initially, doctors give medicine and intervention to open up the blocked blood vessels. If this does not help, brain surgery is performed, the doctor said.
According to Children’s Hospital in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in the US, pediatric stroke affects 25 in 100,000 newborns and 12 in 100,000 children under 18 years of age. Stroke is the sixth leading cause of death in children.
Children at risk of stroke include older children with sickle cell anaemia, congenital heart defects, immune disorders or problems with blood clotting or previously healthy children who are found to have hidden disorders such as narrow blood vessels or a tendency to form blood clots easily. VNS