Stroke and Cerebrovascular Disease

An exceptional multidisciplinary approach for stroke and cerebrovascular disease

When seconds count, you have expertise close to home to provide rapid intervention that can save lives

Our specialty-trained team uses advanced and proven technologies to rapidly diagnose and treat stroke. Neurologists, neurosurgeons, neurointerventional surgeons, neuroradiologists and physical medicine and rehabilitation professionals on the medical staff of Vassar Brothers Medical Center (VBMC) are ready and accessible to perform the latest neurointerventional procedures when needed.

Timing is crucial in the event of an acute stroke. State-of-the-art treatment and coordinated care are available 24/7 to quickly treat stroke patients.

Nationally recognized for advanced stroke care

Vassar Brothers Medical Center is a designated Primary Stroke Center and has received the Get With The Guidelines® Stroke Gold Quality Achievement Award with Target: Stroke Honor Roll. VBMC met specific quality measures for the diagnosis and treatment of stroke patients within a designated period to earn this recognition. The award recognizes our organizational commitment and success in ensuring that our stroke patients receive the most appropriate treatment according to nationally recognized, research-based guidelines.

Conditions We Treat


  • A stroke occurs when a blood vessel becomes closed, narrowed or ruptures resulting in decreased blood flow to the brain. Symptoms include weakness or numbness on one side of the body or face; language problems such as slurred speech, inability to form words or gibberish speech; or difficulties related to balance.
  • An ischemic stroke occurs when blood vessels become clogged or narrowed, cutting off blood flow to brain cells.
  • A transient ischemic attack (TIA) is a stroke that occurs when a blood clot blocks an artery for a brief time. Symptoms usually last less than 24 hours.
  • A hemorrhagic stroke occurs when a weakened blood vessel ruptures. The most common cause is high blood pressure (uncontrolled hypertension).
  • A brain aneurysm  occurs when a weakened area in the wall of a blood vessel bulges or ruptures, causing a sudden and severe headache. The headache is often accompanied by nausea, vomiting, aversion to light (photophobia), a stiff neck, sudden difficulty walking and loss of consciousness and/or other stroke-like symptoms.
  • An arteriovenous malformation (AVM) is an abnormal tangle of blood vessels in the brain or spinal cord. An AVM can cause headaches, bleeding, seizures and stroke-like symptoms.
  • Intracranial vascular disease or stenosis is thought to account for as much as 10% of all strokes and transient ischemic attacks (TIAs). It is a narrowing of arteries at the base of the skull or inside the brain.

Treatments and Technology

Neurointerventional surgery

Vassar Brothers Medical Center is the only hospital in the Hudson Valley to provide minimally invasive treatment for cerebral aneurysms. At VBMC, it is possible to remove or dissolve blood clots using cutting-edge, minimally invasive technology.

Rehabilitation for stroke

Following a stroke, you may be challenged by movement, speech and cognitive difficulties. In these instances, we offer the expert physical, occupational and speech therapy needed to help you recover.

Health Quest Medical Practice rehab therapy programs provide various comprehensive rehabilitation options, including:

  • Short-term acute inpatient rehabilitation- The Paul Rosenthal Rehabilitation Center is a 10 bed, state-of-the-art, rehabilitation facility run by a physical medicine and rehabilitation-trained physician. Comprehensive care is offered to stroke patients recovering here.
  • Long-term inpatient rehabilitation- The Thompson House, a 100-bed nursing home on the grounds of Northern Dutchess Hospital (NDH), specializes in the care and rehabilitation of patients with medically complex needs.
  • Outpatient rehabilitation- Health Quest rehabilitation centers with state-of-the-art equipment are located throughout the Hudson Valley. Physical, occupational and speech-language therapists will develop a program customized to your needs.
  • Home care- You may need extensive treatment at home following a stroke. Skilled nurses and home health aides can help with activities of daily living as well as home therapy.

Caring for a stroke patient can tax even the most devoted caregiver. The Stroke Support Group helps patients and their families with a range of medical, emotional and legal issues.