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Woman suffers from ‘Beauty Parlour Stroke Syndrome’ as first case reported in India

The condition usually occurs when a person tilts the neck for a shampoo resulting in the compression of a critical blood vessel.

A 50-year-old woman suffered from a rare kind of stroke during her routine visit to a salon. The lady has gone to get her hair trimmed, however, she suffered a stroke while she was getting her hair washed. The stroke resulted as she tilted her neck back to rest it on the basin resulting in the compression of a critical blood vessel supplying the brain.

Her treating Neurologist Dr. Sudhir Kumar told, “The woman initially experienced dizziness, nausea, and vomiting while having her hair washed with shampoo in a beauty parlour. Initially, she was taken to a gastroenterologist, who treated her symptomatically. But the symptoms did not improve, the next day she developed a mild imbalance while walking. She was referred for my opinion. She had mild right cerebellar signs. MRI brain revealed infarct in the right posterior inferior cerebellar territory, MR angiogram showed left vertebral hypoplasia.”

The syndrome occurs when the neck is hyper-extended as a result of a jerk or subject to some pressure while having a shampoo and remaining in that position for an extended period. The hyper-extension can cause artery compression, resulting in a blood vessel tear, which causes a blood clot that travels to one’s brain and causes a stroke.

This kind of stroke was first reported in America when five women complained of severe dizziness, loss of balance, and facial numbness who had developed serious neurological symptoms following a hair wash at a salon. The term Beauty parlour syndrome was coined by Dr Michael Weintraub and published in the Journal of the American Medical Association in 1993.

As a precautionary measure, it is advisable to get gentle massages rather than vigorous massages as they put excess pressure on the blood vessels which may lead to a brain stroke. In addition, individuals who suffer from additional risk factors such as smoking, high blood pressure, obesity, high cholesterol levels, diabetes, and excessive alcohol consumption must be wary and consult their doctors in case any symptoms develop after a salon appointment.

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