DMSO should probably be used in the treatment of all stroke patients. DMSO has a number of properties that make it valuable in treating any problem involving the brain.
One very important property of DMSO is the ability to cross the blood-brain barrier. It is one of the few products to cross this protective barrier. The blood-brain barrier serves as a protective mechanism that exists between circulating blood and the brain. It protects the brain from substances which are toxic to brain tissue.
There is normally an accumulation of water in the brain as a result of the stroke because the stroke damage breaks down some of the cells. The fluid buildup in the cranium compresses other brain cells resulting in the death of more cells. DMSO actually helps to remove the excess fluid from the brain resulting in lower pressure and less brain damage. There can also be an accumulation of blood that should be removed if it is providing pressure on brain cells. The best way to remove this blood is through the use of DMSO. The DMSO helps other blood vessels take over the work of the damaged blood vessels, thereby potentially saving the life of the stroke victim.
DMSO also protects nerve cells from any disruption following stroke injury. Other products have been used for this, but DMSO provides better protection than the other products. Another important consideration is the fact that there are no harmful side effects when using DMSO. The proper use of DMSO could save the lives of many stroke victims each year.
When the patient has a stroke DMSO treatment should start as soon as possible. Emergency personnel should all be trained in the use of DMSO. Ambulance crews should at least give DMSO treatment topically to all stroke patients when the patient is first picked up. When the patient arrives at the hospital he can have DMSO added to his intravenous infusion. Delay in starting treatment can result in permanent brain damage or death.
Immediate treatment is desirable even if the stroke is relatively minor. With a minor stroke immediate DMSO treatment will minimize the possibility of any permanent damage. If it is a major stroke immediate treatment with DMSO can often prevent major permanent disability or death. Brain tissue is very fragile and deteriorates rapidly if it is deprived of oxygen. When treatment is delayed certain brain functions can be destroyed permanently or the patient can die.
Even though early treatment is desirable good results have been obtained when treatment is started long after the stroke.