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MEDICAL ANIMATION TRANSCRIPT: A stroke occurs when the blood flow in part of your brain is blocked. After just a few minutes, the starved brain cells begin to die. Normally, the brain receives blood via two major pairs of arteries which branch throughout brain tissue and supply your brain cells with a constant flow of oxygen, glucose, and nutrients necessary for their functions. In one type of stroke, ischemic stroke, an artery in your brain narrows or becomes completely blocked preventing normal blood flow. The blockage may be caused by a blood clot, also called a thrombus, which forms in an unhealthy artery of the brain. The lack of blood flow causes the tissue the artery supplies to become starved or ischemic. Similarly, the blockage may be due to an embolus, a blood clot that forms elsewhere in the body and travels to the brain. The embolus lodges in a narrowed artery and obstructs blood flow. Immediate treatment for your stroke may help to minimize brain cell injury and death. If you have an ischemic stroke, you may be given medication to break up the clot causing your stroke. Later, your doctor may recommend surgery, such as carotid endarterectomy to reduce your risk of having another ischemic stroke.