By Dr. Brian McDonough

KYW’s Medical Reports Sponsored By Independence Blue Cross

By Dr. Brian McDonough, Medical Editor

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PHILADELPHIA (CBS)— It is devastating to suffer a stroke. It can impact the patient and everyone around them.

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Within five years of having a stroke, 24 percent of women and 42 percent of men will experience another. That is the bad news. The good news is that there’s plenty you can do to reduce the chances of a recurrent stroke.

A big help is to discuss with your doctor the risk factors that caused your first stroke.

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Things like stopping smoking, taking your medications and eating a diet low in calories, saturated fats, trans fats, and cholesterol. For those who have never had a stroke the message is the same—to change your lifestyle.