Transient ischemic attack (TIA)

Transient ischemic attack (TIA) is a temporary interruption of the blood flow to an area of the brain. TIAs are a warning sign that a stroke may soon follow.

A clot in an artery, a drop in blood pressure, or a change in heart rhythm or rate may all reduce blood flow to the brain and result in a TIA.

Symptoms of a TIA are similar to those of a stroke. They may include:

  • Vision problems.
  • Difficulty speaking, or unusual behavior and thought processes.
  • Difficulty understanding words.
  • Loss of consciousness.
  • Seizures.
  • Dizziness (vertigo) or trouble walking.
  • Weakness or numbness on one side of the body.

Unlike a stroke, a TIA does not cause lasting symptoms. Symptoms usually go away after 10 to 20 minutes.

A TIA is considered a warning sign of an impending stroke.

Last Updated: November 11, 2009

Author: Monica Rhodes

Medical Review: Adam Husney, MD - Family Medicine & Karin M. Lindholm, DO - Neurology

related physicians

related services

Bon Secours International| Sisters of Bon Secours USA| Bon Secours Health System

This information does not replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any warranty or liability for your use of this information. Your use of this information means that you agree to the Terms of Use. Privacy Policy. How this information was developed to help you make better health decisions.

© 1995-2010 Healthwise, Incorporated. Healthwise, Healthwise for every health decision, and the Healthwise logo are trademarks of Healthwise, Incorporated.