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TIMELINE FOR STROKE DEVELOPMENTS
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TERMINOLGY

Hippocrates first recognises stroke and calls the condition ‘apoplexia’, which is a Greek term that stands for “struck down by violence.”

460 BC - 370 BC

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DISCOVERY

Pathologist Johann Jakob Wepfer, was the first physician to hypothesize that the effects of stroke are caused by the disruption of the blood supply to the brain - massive bleeding in certain patients and blocked arteries in others.

1620 - 1695

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TREATMENT

Blood was seen to be one of the four ‘humours’ vital for life, and apoplexy believed to be caused by an interruption (or obstruction) of that humour to the brain.

A common form of treatment for apoplexy was ‘blood-letting’ – extracting sufficient volumes to alleviate pressure on the organs.

1600

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PROGNOSIS

The prognosis for Apoplexy was pessimistic. Patients were expected to either die, improve unaided or linger on in misery.

As the eighteenth century progressed the theory of blood pressure was gradually accepted. This influenced the rationale for the practice of bloodletting as a way of reducing pressure in the blood.

18th Century

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