Presidential Scholars Theses (1990 – 2006)


Open Access Presidential Scholars Thesis

First Advisor

Edward Amend


Cerebrovascular disease;


A cerebral vascular accident (CVA) is commonly referred to as a stroke. Stroke is the third leading cause of death and the number one cause of serious disability in the United States. Approximately 550,000 people suffer a stroke each year; 150,000 of these result in death. Each stroke is unique. After a stroke, some victims will suffer severe deficits and/or permanent disability for the remainder of their lives. Yet other victims may suffer only mild, temporary deficits and may recover completely. Currently over three million Americans are living with the effects of stroke . Most of these individuals have been successfully rehabilitated through therapy, medical treatment, and lifestyle changes .

I have been exposed to stroke patients and their families in a medical setting throughout the past three years. It has been my observation that most people do not fully understand stroke, and they definitely do not comprehend their own ability to prevent stroke. Therefore, the purpose of this paper is to provide thorough information about stroke and its consequences, and to educate the reader about preventative measures which can decrease stroke risk. Every individual has some degree of stroke risk; however, many risk factors can be eliminated by mere changes in lifestyle . These conscious behaviors, in addition to major medical and diagnostic breakthroughs, provide hope for stroke prevention and treatment in the future.

As I enter the field of physical therapy, I will reference this paper often. I plan to share it with stroke survivors, their families, and others affected by stroke so that it can serve as an educational tool for those frightened individuals with unending questions. However, it is my hope that this paper not only educates stroke survivors and their families, but also health conscious individuals who desire to reduce their risk of stroke and improve their overall quality of life .

Date of Award



Department of Biology

Presidential Scholar Designation

A paper submitted in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the designation Presidential Scholar


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Date Original


Object Description

1 PDF file (69 pages)

Date Digital



©1995 Allison L. Hartman





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Neurology Commons