Comprehensive Stroke Center
Rhode Island Hospital

TIA Unit at Rhode Island Hospital

Transient ischemic attack (TIA) is a medical emergency that signals a high risk of impending stroke.

Patients often do not recognize the symptoms of TIA, but it is imperative that regardless of the duration or severity, symptoms of TIA should be treated in the same manner as acute ischemic stroke.

What is the TIA unit at Rhode Island Hospital?

Rhode Island Hospital’s dedicated TIA unit allows for close collaboration among members of our team, which includes neurologists, emergency medicine providers, radiologists, specialty trained nurses and social workers. The establishment of the TIA unit has significantly decreased the risk of subsequent strokes.

What services are offered at the TIA unit?

Rhode Island Hospital’s TIA Unit offers medical care in an emergency setting from experienced providers, who specialize in diagnosing and treating transient ischemic attacks. Providers will oversee which tests should be performed, manage the care of patients while in the unit, develop treatment plans, and support after care.

Who can be admitted to the TIA unit?

Anyone who suspects they recently had a transient ischemic attack can be assessed by the medical specialists in Rhode Island Hospital’s TIA Unit.

What is the goal of treatment in the TIA unit?

The evaluation of TIA in an emergency setting offers the best opportunity to prevent disabling stroke. Rapid evaluation in the TIA unit helps us to determine each patient’s immediate risk of stroke and deliver the most effective therapy.

Patients who have a TIA often experience a stroke within the first week following the TIA, and the risk of stroke within 90 days is estimated to be 10 to 20 percent. By acting quickly, the TIA unit reduces the incidence of subsequent stroke to one or two percent.

Symptoms of TIA

The symptoms of TIA and stroke are basically the same, and occur suddenly:

  • Numbness, tingling or weakness of the face, arm or leg, especially on one side of the body
  • Difficulty speaking or understanding language; difficulty reading or writing
  • Loss or distortion of vision in one or both eyes
  • Dizziness, difficulty walking, or loss of balance or coordination

Regardless of the duration or severity, symptoms of TIA should be treated in the same manner as acute stroke. If you have any of these symptoms, even for a short time, call 911 or go to the hospital immediately.

More about stroke care at Rhode Island Hospital