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Vascular Neurology (Stroke)

Why choose Ochsner Health for vascular neurology care?

When you need care for a stroke, two things matter above all others: efficiency and expertise. That’s what vascular neurology at Ochsner provides to patients from Louisiana, Mississippi and beyond.

Vascular neurologists specialize in diagnosing and treating stroke and other cerebrovascular diseases, which are conditions of the brain and related blood vessels. At Ochsner, our vascular neurologists partner with a wide range of specialists to care for patients through a network of hospitals, clinics and rehabilitation facilities. Anchoring this network is the nationally recognized Ochsner Neuroscience Institute Comprehensive Stroke Center at Ochsner Medical Center - New Orleans. No matter where you live, when you need vascular neurology services, you have timely access to leading-edge care from an expert team.

The more experts available to help diagnose and treat cerebrovascular disease, the better. That’s why multidisciplinary care defines vascular neurology at Ochsner. In addition to vascular neurologists, many other providers play important roles in patients’ care. These include neurosurgeons, interventional neuroradiologists, neurocritical care specialists, advanced practice providers and nurses, all of whom collaborate to achieve the best possible outcomes for patients.

What else distinguishes vascular neurology at Ochsner? Other factors include:

  • Advanced technology. We use the latest technology and techniques in patient care. This includes RapidAI, a tool that uses advanced imaging and artificial intelligence to help doctors make quicker decisions about stroke care when every second counts.

  • Dedicated unit for the sickest patients. Ochsner Medical Center - New Orleans is home to a 34-bed neuro-intensive care unit where severely ill patients receive high-level, around-the-clock care. Patients from other Ochsner hospitals — as well as other hospitals in the community — can be transferred to New Orleans for this expert care.

  • National recognition for outstanding care. U.S. News & World Report has nationally rated Ochsner Medical Center - New Orleans in Neurology & Neurosurgery for more than a decade. Healthgrades consistently ranks the medical center among the top 5% in the United States for treatment of a stroke. The Joint Commission awarded Ochsner Medical Center - New Orleans Comprehensive Stroke Center certification. Additionally, Ochsner LSU Health Shreveport - Academic Medical Center was the first facility in North Louisiana to earn Comprehensive Stroke Center certification.

  • Robust research. We participate in clinical trials focused on acute stroke management and prevention as we constantly seek to improve patient care.

  • Telemedicine to bring high-level stroke care closer to home. Our TeleStroke Program allows doctors at dozens of hospitals in Louisiana and Mississippi to consult Ochsner vascular neurologists via video technology. This around-the-clock access to specialist expertise helps keep patients safe and reduces the need to transfer them out of their communities.

We offer vascular neurology services to serve Louisiana and Mississippi, including in New Orleans, Baton Rouge, Shreveport, Monroe, Lafayette and Slidell. Expert stroke care is available at the following Ochsner locations and partner facilities:

Joint Commission Certified Comprehensive Stroke Centers

Ochsner Medical Center - New Orleans
Ochsner LSU Health - Monroe Medical Center

Joint Commission Certified Primary Stroke Centers

Ochsner Lafayette General Medical Center
Ochsner LSU Health - Monroe Medical Center
Ochsner Medical Center - Kenner
Ochsner Medical Center - Northshore
St. Tammany Parish Hospital
Slidell Memorial Hospital

Hospitals

Ochsner Baptist - A Campus of Ochsner Medical Center
Ochsner Lafayette General Medical Center
Ochsner Medical Center - Baton Rouge
Ochsner Medical Center - West Bank Campus
Ochsner St. Anne Hospital
Ochsner St. Mary
St. Bernard Parish Hospital
St. Charles Parish Hospital
Leonard J. Chabert Medical Center

Rehabilitation and Skilled Nursing

Ochsner West Campus - Ochsner Rehabilitation Hospital
Northshore Medical Complex - Northshore Rehabilitation Hospital

Neuroscience Clinics

Baton Rouge area:
Ochsner Medical Center - Baton Rouge

Kenner/River Region:
Ochsner Medical Center - Kenner

Lafayette area:
Ochsner Lafayette General Neuroscience Center

New Orleans area:
Ochsner Neuroscience Institute at Ochsner Medical Center - New Orleans
Ochsner Baptist - A Campus of Ochsner Medical Center
Ochsner Medical Center - West Bank Campus
Ochsner Hospital for Orthopedics & Sports Medicine

Northshore:
Ochsner Northshore Medical Complex
Ochsner Neuroscience Institute - Slidell
Ochsner Neuroscience Institute - Covington
St. Tammany Parish Hospital

Two common conditions our vascular neurologists treat are ischemic strokes and transient ischemic attacks. The most common type of stroke, ischemic strokes occur when a blood clot blocks a blood vessel in the brain. A transient ischemic attack is a temporary blockage of blood to the brain.

Our team treats many other types of cerebrovascular disease, including:

  • Brain hemorrhages — bleeding that can occur inside the brain or in the space surrounding it

  • Carotid artery disease — a blockage or narrowing of one or both of the arteries in the neck supplying the brain with blood

  • Cerebral aneurysms — when a weak area of a brain artery bulges

  • Cerebrovascular malformations — abnormalities of the blood vessels in the brain, including arteriovenous malformations and venous malformations

  • Cervical artery dissections — tears in the arteries that transport blood to the brain

  • Intracranial atherosclerosis — buildup of plaque in the arteries that carry blood to the brain, potentially leading to narrowing and blockages

  • Moyamoya disease — when blockages in the arteries at the base of the brain lead to the development of small vessels to carry blood to the organ

  • Vasculitis — inflammation that can affect blood vessels in parts of the central nervous system, such as the brain and spinal cord

At Ochsner, we provide the full range of stroke treatment. We make every effort to treat patients close to home, including via virtual visit consultations with experts at the Ochsner Neuroscience Institute. If, however, the treatment you need isn’t available at your local hospital, we’ll stabilize you and transfer you to a different facility for care.

For ischemic strokes, a key treatment is thrombolytics, an intravenous medication that can break up stroke-causing blood clots. Patients can only receive thrombolytics three to four and a half hours after stroke symptoms begin. Some patients need a procedure called thrombectomy to remove a blood clot and restore blood flow.

We can treat brain hemorrhages, or bleeding in the brain, using a variety of methods, depending on the cause. These include blood pressure medications and surgeries to stop bleeding or repair abnormalities of arteries or veins.

In addition to acute stroke treatment, we also provide patient education about stroke risk factors and stroke prevention. We partner with other specialists, such as cardiologists and vascular and endovascular surgeons, to treat conditions that may contribute to stroke. Neurological rehabilitation services are available to help stroke patients rebuild strength and functional skills and support long-term success in stroke recovery.

Stroke isn’t the only cerebrovascular disease our vascular neurologists treat. Our team offers a wide range of procedures to treat non-stroke disorders of blood flow to the brain.

Recovering from a stroke can be physically and mentally challenging. That’s why we offer support for the long term.

One way we support stroke patients is with the Stroke Mobile program available in New Orleans. Led by a registered nurse and health educator specially trained in stroke care, this free program offers up to a year of support for stroke recovery and rehabilitation. The Stroke Mobile program can help you maintain independence and reduce the risk of another stroke. For more information about the Stroke Mobile program, call 504-559-2710.

Attending a support group is a great way to forge connections with stroke survivors who understand the challenges and rewards of recovery. Stroke support groups meet in Gretna, Kenner and Lafayette. For information about meetings in Gretna, call 504-371-9314. To learn more about meetings in Kenner, call 504-464-8173. For more information about meetings in Lafayette, call 337-289-7740.

As a Joint Commission Disease Specific Comprehensive Stroke Certified Hospital, the Ochsner Stroke Program collects demographic and outcome data to continuously improve the program and outcomes of our patients.

More than half of Ochsner’s stroke patients are discharged home to their families allowing them to enjoy life in their most comfortable environment.

Ischemic stroke occurs as a result of an obstruction within a blood vessel supplying blood to the brain. It accounts for 87 percent of all stroke cases.

Hemorrhagic stroke accounts for about 13 percent of stroke cases. It results from a weakened vessel that ruptures and bleeds into the surrounding brain. The blood accumulates and compresses the surrounding brain tissue. The two types of hemorrhagic stroke are intracerebral (within the brain) hemorrhage or subarachnoid hemorrhage.

Recombinant tissue-type plasminogen activator (rtPA) is the only approved therapy for acute ischemic stroke (AIS). Ochsner’s stroke treatment team has seen positive outcomes, with an improved rate of complications.

Mechanical thrombectomy for acute ischemic stroke is a minimally invasive procedure in which the clot responsible for the stroke is removed from the artery of the brain. This procedure is performed by highly specialized physicians and can be safely performed only on patients who meet certain criteria. A thrombectomy allows for reestablishment of blood flow to brain tissue in order to minimize the damage of the stroke.

There are several other procedures that a stroke patient may have to undergo during their hospitalization. These procedures are performed by highly specialized physicians including vascular surgeons, neuroradiologists, and neurosurgeons.


FAQs

Stroke symptoms appear suddenly. They include numbness or weakness in the face or on one side of the body. Disrupted vision, difficulty walking or maintaining balance, difficulty speaking, and an intense headache may also occur.

Call 911 right away. The sooner medical care begins, the better.

The longer the brain goes without oxygenated blood, the more brain cells die. Acting quickly means you can receive treatment, such as thrombolytics, as soon as possible. That can reduce the risk of long-term effects from stroke.

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Map of Ochsner-affiliated facilities that provide services related to Vascular Neurology (Stroke)

Vascular Neurology (Stroke) Locations

Ochsner Lafayette General Medical Center
1214 Coolidge St.
Lafayette, LA 70503
  • Open 24/7
Ochsner LSU Health - Monroe Medical Center
4864 Jackson St.
Monroe, LA 71202
  • Open 24/7
Ochsner Medical Complex - The Grove
10310 The Grove Blvd.
Baton Rouge, LA 70836
  • Monday–Friday: 7 a.m.-5 p.m.
  • Saturday: 8 a.m.-1 p.m.
Ochsner Medical Center – New Orleans
1514 Jefferson Highway
New Orleans, LA 70121
  • Open 24/7
Slidell Memorial Hospital East
100 Medical Center Drive
Slidell, LA 70461
  • Open 24/7
Ochsner Health Center - O'Neal
16777 Medical Center Drive
Baton Rouge, LA 70816
  • Monday–Friday: 7 a.m.-6 p.m.