A stroke is the sudden death of the part of the brain cells due to lack of oxygen. A stroke occurs when blood flow to the brain is stopped resulting in brain disfunction.It is caused by stoppage of an artery to the brain. After a stroke, brain cells stop working in the in the places affected destroying or losing the neurons. Patients suffer physical disabilities such as partial loss of motricty or hemiplegic, sensory loss, language disorders, aphasia, visual disorders, and even memory loss. The level of recovery will vary from patient to patient. Stroke units are areas inside a hospital where physicians, nurses, and other ancillary personnel who are well trained and experienced in stroke monitoring and management, provide care for acute stroke patients. Management of acute stroke patients improves the patient’s chance of recovery. After a stroke, the type of care everybody receives varies. Some hospitals specialize in caring for stroke patients and others specialize in rehabilitation of the patients. Some hospitals could both care for the patients and rehabilitate them.
Establishment of stoke units has greatly transformed the results of stroke patients. This has reduced the mortality rate by a huge margin. The main objective of a stroke unit is to step up the outcome of strokes and accuracy of diagnosis; this enhances the probability of new treatments and in overall reduces the hospitalization duration. For the stroke unit to operate most efficiently, it must be incorporated in the healthcare system. This means that transport is available when needed to facilitate easy movement incase of emergencies. Also a stroke team must be in place to ensure that, all activities are run in an efficient and through way. A stroke team must be headed by a highly experienced neurologist .With such a person in charge, there is speedy triage consultation of patients in the department. This enhances the proportion of patients eligible for acute stroke treatment. Apart from having an efficient and experienced team in place, there must be relevant and up to date facilities such as computed tomography of the brain and labatory services .This facilities should be available for use on a 24 hour basis.
Stroke unit treatment enhances the overall quality of life. Several trials have demonstrated that stroke patients treated in the stroke units are better off than those treated in the general wards. This is because, in the stroke units, the patients have access to high quality care. The team in the stroke units is highly qualified and has up to date facilities. This ensures that, the stroke patients are well taken care of. Unlike in the stroke units, the general ward does not have the capacity in terms of both manpower and facilities. Stroke patients need close monitoring which may not be available in the general wards. Once patients with symptoms or signs of acute stroke treatment are admitted, treatment is immediately administered. The early administration of treatment is very essential in the treatment of stroke patients. This can only be done in stroke units. Thus the stroke units improve the quality of life.
Treatment in a stroke unit is very much effective. A stroke unit saves lives. This is especially possible in the initial stages of the diagnosis. Stroke units are effective because they facilitate early mobilization of patients .There is evidence that those stroke patients who essential physiological variables such as blood pressure, omolarity, temperature, oxygen saturation, and blood glucose are most likely to enjoy early recovery and better functional results. The effectiveness of stroke units is due to the efficiently coordinated multidisciplinary assessment, intervention and maintenance. The team is also well trained in stroke care and management. Also there is the attribute of specialization in the whole staff team. Lastly in the stroke units, there is active rehabilitation. This is very essential in the management of acute stroke patients.
For proper stroke monitoring, hospitalization is mandatory. Stroke patients require full time experts to facilitate the response of the patient. This management prevents neurological worsening. Research has shown that, stroke patients who are admitted in acute care stroke units have high chances of survival compared to those who opt for the general ward or home care. Whether it is hospitalization in an acute stroke unit or a general ward, it helpful to the patient rather than staying at home. Research has also shown that treatment with thrombolytic within the first few hours has resulted to saving lives. This can only be achievable, if the patient is hospitalized.
In Australia stroke claims the lives of many people. Statistics shows that it is the second largest killer after heart disease. This has prompted the government to act. In Australia acute stroke units are recommended in most of the hospitals. This is certainly important, because the statistics are alarming. To prevent the lives lost each year, the acute stroke units should be in place. However there are many hospitals that admit stroke units though they do not have the acute stroke units. While being in the care of doctors is ital for the stroke patients is essential, that in itself is not enough, because these patients need special attention from experienced experts. Thus there is need to ensure that all hospitals that admit stroke patients have the units. Alternatively since the number is big in Australia, all hospitals should consider putting in place the acute stroke units.
A number of studies have been carried out in Australia to determine the incontinence management practices in the Australian acute stroke units and their adherence to the national stroke foundation. The national stroke foundation has outlined number guidelines to govern the way acute stroke are managed and how to care for the patients both during the stroke and after the stroke. In Australia there are dedicated stroke units that involve themselves with research and survey apart from caring for the stroke patients. It essential for the stroke units to put in place urinary incontinence management plans. The national stroke foundation offers the senior nurses from each unit evidence based urinary management plans. The implementation of these evidence based management plans after a stroke is essential to enhancing the recovery of the patient. Increasing and making available the resources for expert development in the evaluation of treatment and overseeing of urinary incontinence is vital for the improvement and maintenance of skills in acute stroke care.