TIA Versus Stroke
TIA Versus StrokeA TIA is a transient stroke, or "mini-stroke" that often lasts only a few minutes (usually less than 30 minutes), although symptoms may last for up to 24 hours. Symptoms of a stroke, which also usually occur suddenly, are similar to those of a TIA, except they last longer. By definition, a stroke produces symptoms that last for at least 24 hours.
Final Thoughts on TIA Symptoms
Because there is no way to tell whether symptoms are the result of a TIA or an acute stroke, assume that all stroke-like symptoms signal an emergency -- do not wait to see if they go away. It is also important to recognize the symptoms of a TIA, because one-third of people with TIAs will go on to have a stroke within five years. This risk can be significantly reduced with treatment.