What Does Recovery Look Like After a Stroke?

What Does Recovery Look Like After a Stroke?

Share this

A stroke can be life-changing, and care often doesn’t end when upon discharge from the hospital. There is no predictable timeline for recovery, and different stroke survivors will need different levels of support to help them regain independence and confidence in their daily life. Whether you’ve experienced a stroke or you’re caring for someone who has, here are a few things you can expect.


What kind of care do stroke survivors need?

Many people need some additional care after a stroke, even a mild one. Those who have suffered a more severe stroke may continue to navigate stroke recovery for months and potentially years after treatment.

As you prepare to transition from acute care in the hospital to rehabilitation and recovery, ask the following questions to ensure you understand what happened and what comes next:


  • What kind of stroke did I have?
  • What brain functions have been impacted by my stroke?
  • What will my recovery be like?
  • Do I need to take medications?
  • Will I need to follow a special diet?
  • What are my risk factors for having another stroke?
  • Will I be admitted to an inpatient rehabilitation facility or discharged to my home?
  • Do I need to make any safety modifications to my home?
  • What kind of support will I need at home?
  • What services are available at MedStar Health to help me adjust to life after a stroke?

Stroke rehabilitation.

Many patients benefit from stroke rehabilitation, which helps them to regain their strength and independence while recovering from the effects of a stroke. This may involve working with a physical therapist to improve mobility and balance, an occupational therapist to regain confidence in daily activities, and/or a speech therapist to regain communication skills. Your rehabilitation plan will be tailored to your unique short and long term goals, based on your specific needs.

We offer a unique, comprehensive inpatient rehabilitation program at MedStar Good Samaritan Hospital. It’s accredited as a Specialty Program by the Commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities (CARF), highlighting our commitment to the highest quality of stroke recovery care. Our neurorehabilitation center ranks among some of the best in the region, with higher patient satisfaction rates and better “gains per day” (a functional improvement measure) than Maryland averages. Patients also benefit from a smooth transition to therapy at any one of our 50 outpatient sites in the region, when appropriate.

Emotional support.

A stroke can significantly impact survivors and their family’s life, which is why we also offer monthly support groups for patients and caregivers. During support group meetings, we discuss a variety of topics, with sessions dedicated to answering patient questions and offering support for the struggles they’re experiencing. With the encouragement and support of family, friends, and peers, our patients find the strength and motivation to overcome challenges they face after their stroke and reclaim their highest quality of life. 


Preventing secondary strokes.

One in four stroke survivors will experience another stroke, which is why stroke prevention is an important part of recovery. One of the best ways to minimize your chances of another stroke or serious health event is to partner closely with your primary care provider to manage risk factors.

While a stroke can happen to anybody, certain factors increase your risk of stroke, such as:


  • Smoking
  • High cholesterol
  • High blood pressure
  • Diabetes

Sometimes, having a stroke can be a wake-up call to adopt healthier habits that may lower risk factors for chronic conditions and other health complications. A primary care provider who knows your personal and family medical history can help create a plan to optimize your overall well-being. At MedStar Health, patients have access to a wide range of services and programs that can help you achieve your health goals and reduce your risk of a secondary stroke, from smoking cessation programs to dietary support services.


After a stroke, we’re invested in your recovery.

Our Comprehensive Stroke Center at MedStar Franklin Square Medical Center provides a Post Stroke Follow-Up Clinic, where stroke survivors can gain access to the right resources and support to help them move forward with a healthier life. Through the clinic, our providers and staff can help them address risk factors, receive individualized education, and learn about lifestyle modifications that will help improve their recovery and outcomes. In addition, referrals and physician follow-up are provided as needed. 

And, you’ll gain access to all of the resources and expertise within the entire MedStar Health system, including primary care providers, emergency department providers, neurologists, neurosurgeons, rehabilitation specialists, and nurses who can help you achieve your highest level of health. With one electronic health record, we seamlessly communicate and coordinate with your entire care to enhance your recovery and also prevent future strokes. Patients do not need to have received emergent stroke treatment at a MedStar Health hospital in order to participate. To schedule an appointment, please call 443-777-7320.

Recovering after a stroke?

We're here to help. Click below to learn more about care after a stroke, or call to request an appointment.

Call 443-777-7320 or Learn More

Stay up to date and subscribe to our blog

Latest blogs