Strokes, or cerebrovascular accidents, are common. Most are thromboembolic (80%), but some are hemorrhagic (20%). Thirty percent of patients who sustain a stroke die within the first month. Most patients with strokes have paresis of at least one limb. Transient ischemic attacks (TIAs) are short episodes manifested by focal neurologic dysfunction. They usually last only a few minutes, after which complete recovery occurs. The importance of TIAs is that, in 30% of affected patients, a stroke occurs within 4 to 5 years.
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