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Blood Clot in Brain Symptoms

author image Adam Cloe Ph.D./M.D.
Adam Cloe has been published in various scientific journals, including the "Journal of Biochemistry." He is currently a pathology resident at the University of Chicago. Cloe holds a Bachelor of Arts in biochemistry from Boston University, a M.D. from the University of Chicago and a Ph.D. in pathology from the University of Chicago.
Blood Clot in Brain Symptoms
A woman is suffering from a headache. Photo Credit: FlairImages/iStock/Getty Images

A blood clot in the brain can originate within blood vessels in the brain or can be due to a clot forming elsewhere and traveling to the brain, resulting in an embolism. Blood clots in the brain can result in an ischemic stroke, which is the result of obstructed blood flow to part of the brain.

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One common symptom of a blood clot occurring in the brain is paralysis of one side of the body, Patients also may develop numbness or extreme weakness on one side or in parts of the body. These symptoms typically occur very suddenly.

One way to test for these symptoms involves having the patient raise both arms above his body. If one arm begins to droop or fall, it could be because of a stroke. Blood clots in the brain also can cause paralysis or drooping on one side of the face.


A blood clot in the brain often results in a sudden and severe headache, according to the Neurology Channel. Patients sometimes describe this headache as a "bolt out of the blue" sensation, and it can be accompanied by nausea or vomiting.


Blood clots in the brain also may result in sudden problems with coordination and balance. This is because the brain modulates muscle movements. This symptom of an ischemic stroke can result in problems with walking or balance and can cause sudden falls.

Language Problems

A blood clot in the brain can affect the way the brain processes and uses language. In some cases, this can lead to the affected patient having problems with forming or using words. Alternatively, patients still may be able to form words but have a difficult time processing what they mean or understanding what people are saying to them. This symptom is known as aphasia.


A stroke also can disrupt vision, according to the Merck Manuals. In some cases, a stroke can cause blindness in one eye, which may be temporary or permanent. In other cases, a person who has a blood clot in the brain will lose vision in portions of her visual field. Typically this will affect the same side of both eyes. An ischemic stroke also can result in double vision.

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