Symptoms and Effects of Arterial Dissection

Arterial dissection is a rare and serious condition that occurs when there’s a separation of the layers of an artery wall, which supplies oxygen-bearing blood to the head. It’s the most common cause of stroke among young adults. Early detection and intervention is key in cases concerning this ailment.

This diagnosis is associated with frequent visits to the chiropractor for neck manipulation. Though in the most extreme cases arterial dissection is fatal, there are many symptoms and long-term effects associated the condition.


Arterial dissection can be identified by many minute but symptoms including severe headache, pain in your face and neck, problems with your sight, drooping (painful) eyelids and fainting.

Recognizing symptoms is important but the difficulty in diagnosing arterial dissection is that it boils down to timely, professional imaging. Ultrasound, CT scans and other imaging are common ways of identifying the condition.


Blunt brain trauma and injury to the neck can lead to the development of arterial dissection. Also, the gradual build up of small traumas sustained through spinal and neck realignment and manipulation are common causes. If patients suffers from high blood pressure or smokes, their likelihood of have arterial dissection is higher.

Effects of Artery Dissection

In patients of age 45 and under, strokes are the most common outcome associated with artery dissection. There are however, other lingering effects in a patient’s brain and body.

hand numbnessA lack of coordination and a continuing difficulty to swallow are two lasting effects of the condition. In extreme cases, a person may suffer from the loss of vision due to impairment of the visual cortex. Some patients have even reported sudden, permanent paralysis and numbness.

As the diagnosis causes a rapid escape of blood from the ruptured blood vessels, the outcome almost always includes some degree of a stroke. The clot that collects in the area of dissection can break off, travel through the bloodstream and get stuck in smaller arteries in the brain. Later, this blockage causes impaired brain function and ultimately a stroke.

Whether it’s you or a loved one seeing a chiropractor for neck manipulation, be sure that you keep a close eye on how the body feels after visits. Do your research and choose a specialist that has plenty of successful experience doing such procedures. Should some symptoms arise, visit a physician as soon as possible to get checked out.

If you feel that you or a loved one has experienced arterial dissection at the hands of a chiropractor you may consider seeking legal representation. Call or send and email to set up a free legal consultation with a local expert in stroke cases.

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