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         Someone once asked me, “If you had a
stroke, what kind would you rather have?” After much time spent researching, I
found it easier to tell them a specific stroke that definitely would NOT want
to endure and that is a cerebellar stroke. To understand why, I think it is
best you understand the difference between the two main types of strokes:
ischemic and hemorrhagic (“Types of Strokes,” 2007). When an ischemic stroke
occurs, this means a blood vessel has become blocked, usually by a blood clot,
and a portion of the brain becomes deprived of oxygen and will cease to
function (“Types of Strokes,” 2007). In a hemorrhagic stroke, the blood vessel
that carries oxygen and nutrients to the brain ruptures and spills blood into
the surrounding area of the brain. This also deprives the brain and will stop
functions (“Types of Strokes,” 2007). A cerebellar stroke is a type of ischemic
stroke in that a blood vessel that leads to a region of the cerebellum is
inhibited or bleeding, therefore interrupting blood supply to said region.

         Now it is time to understand the
function of the cerebellum. Located inferior to the occipital lobe (Williams,
n.d.), the cerebellum contains three different lobes: the flocculonodular lobe,
mainly playing a role in balance and spatial orientation, anterior/posterior
lobes which provide assistance in fine-tuning motor movement (think of this as
the part of your brain that accounts for gravity) and then a larger, more
lateral zone, known as the cerebrocerebellum, which processes incoming and
outcoming information for more accurate motor movement. (“The Cerebellum,”
n.d.)

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         So as you can see, the cerebellum plays
a large role in the navigation of our reality. According to “Centre for Neuro
Skills,” (n.d.) many afflictions have been associated with damage to the
cerebellum such as the inability to judge distance, loss of coordination of
motor movement, tendency of falling, and countless other ailments. The reason
as I present this as the particular stroke that I would NOT like to have, is
because I myself am a musician. I love to play the guitar and many other
stringed instruments, but mainly the six string. If I were to have a cerebellar
stroke, a huge aspect of my life would be affected. Not only would I (most
likely) face challenges when writing, driving, or pouring a cup of coffee, but
I would also have a hard time with what was once my getaway – playing guitar.

The affects the stroke would have on my anterior and/or posterior lobes may
cause my coordination to become so erroneous that my left hand-fingers will no
longer be able communicate with my brain to provide precise contact with each
string and note as well as communicate with my right hand to supply a steady
rhythm. While there is much hope for victims of a cerebellar stroke to continue
doing what they love through programs like physical therapy, it would still be
heartbreaking to learn that there are limitations placed on my ability because
of circumstances provided by the stroke. Therefore, I would NEVER wish a
cerebellar stroke on myself, or my worst enemy.

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