Why did I have a stroke?

A question I’ve asked myself a million times.

No cast-iron cause for my stroke was discovered. Because I was so young, there were a batch of tests, all of which were negative. However, I have suffered with a couple of known stroke risk factors for 20+ years, so I am able to make an educated guess as to probable causes.

High Blood Pressure

I have been taking medication for hypertension for many years. Pre-stroke, my BP was always high, despite the medication. Immediately after the stroke, the medication was overhauled and since that time I have been taking completely different tablets. I measure my BP regularly, it is pretty normal under this new regime.

If you have high BP, despite your medication, I’d recommend keeping on at your doctors, changing meds as necessary until it comes under control. There shouldn’t be any need to just accept that the readings as inevitable – there are many different BP meds on the market, and I think one of my mistakes was that I was too hands-off.

Diabetes

I have been diabetic for probably as long. Both parents, plus most of my father’s family, were diabetic. This, too, received medical attention, and I took tablets every day, pre-stroke. I had regular blood (HBA1C) tests to monitor this, but didn’t really pay attention to the results or the consequences. Another thing I did not do was to perform regular home tests, pricking my finger and testing my blood with a glucometer. Again, I was too hands-off. Post-stroke, my medication for this too was overhauled, and I now have to inject insulin twice a day. Another difference, post-stroke, is that I know far more about my diabetes. I usually check my blood twice per day, and have a far better idea of how different foods affect me.