In order to make a stroke
diagnosis, a healthcare provider will usually begin by asking a number of questions (known as the medical history) and perform a physical exam. If the healthcare provider believes that a person has had a stroke, he or she may order tests. After the doctor has made a stroke diagnosis, he or she may recommend other tests to help determine a stroke cause
Diagnosing Stroke Begins With a Medical History and Physical Exam
When a possible stroke patient arrives at a hospital, a healthcare professional will first ask the patient or a companion what happened and when the possible stroke symptoms
began. He or she will also ask questions about stroke risk factors
, such as:
The healthcare provider will then typically perform a physical exam, including a short neurological examination looking for stroke signs and symptoms. If the healthcare provider believes that a person has had a stroke, he or she will order tests to confirm the stroke diagnosis.