After a TIA (Mini Stroke)

Transient ischaemic attack (TIA)

Treatment after a TIA

If you have recently had stroke-like symptoms that disappeared quickly, they could have been caused by a TIA.

A TIA should be treated as an emergency. You should get medical advice as soon as possible because of the risk of having a stroke in the near future. 

If you are at high risk of stroke, you should see a stroke specialist within 24 hours of when your symptoms started. You should also have a brain scan within 24 hours. You might have a CT (computed tomography) scan or an MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) scan.

If you are at lower risk of stroke, you should be assessed by a specialist as soon as possible, and definitely within one week.  

Once it has been confirmed that you have had a TIA, your healthcare team will talk to you about your risk factors for stroke. Making changes to your lifestyle could help reduce the risk of having a stroke.

These changes might include

  • stopping smoking, 
  • reducing the amounts of saturated fat in you diet, 
  • reducing the salt in your diet,
  • reducing alcohol intake
  • losing weight
  • taking more exercise.

 Risk of stroke is also reduced by:

  • making sure your blood pressure is controlled within safe limits
  • drug treatments to make the blood thinner or reduce the risk of clotting
  • taking a statin to reduce your blood cholesterol


If your specialist thinks that the cause might be blockage of the main blood vessel in your neck (the carotid artery), you should have a scan of your neck within one week.  If the scan shows significant narrowing of your carotid artery, you might be advised to have an operation called a carotid endarterectomy. 



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