Can a stroke lead to blindness?

5 answers | Last updated: Sep 14, 2016
A fellow caregiver asked...

My father-in law is 76years old on 27th November 2012 he work up and was not able to see. after a CT Scan it was learned he had a stroke. He is not able to see anything now and he keeps complaining about headaches. Do you think he would regain his sight. He is so depressed.

Expert Answers

Jennifer Serafin, N.P. is a registered nurse and geriatric nurse practitioner at the Jewish Homes for the Aged in San Francisco.

So sorry to hear about your father's difficulty. Many stroke patients experience some vision loss, while others experience complete blindness. The extent of the vision loss depends on the amount and location of brain damage from the stroke.

What I would suggest is that he work closely with an occupational therapist who specializes in vision therapy. Perhaps they can help him use different parts of his brain to improve his vision. He should also see an opthalmologist for a full evaluation as well.

Regarding the depression, strokes commonly cause depression due to the changes they create in the brain, as well as their devastating effects. Perhaps he will need to see a mental health professional for either psychotherapy or antidepressants.

Good luck!

Community Answers

A fellow caregiver answered...

my aunt had a series of strokes and she became blind. I don't know how that works, but it sure can happen just that way. She never recovered her sight, but since I don't know the mechanics, I can't say people never do show improvement. the headaches could be an indicator of high blood pressure and more strokes ahead...but I am guessing.

A fellow caregiver answered...

I had a stroke about 2 years ago it took the sight from one eye, my sight it that eye hasnt come sorry for your father in law maybe try those readers that read to you maybe that would help with his keep.his mind busy

Ca-claire answered...

The answer to your questions are: Yes, a stroke may lead to blindness; yes, it may cause headaches; anything is possible after a stroke. The difficult part is motivation - the stroke patient wants to sleep and rest more, but that is not necessarily the best for them. It takes hard work on the patient's part, as well as the family members/caregivers of stroke patients. There is so much that is unknown about brains and how they function. Work with your uncles, get him into a stroke rehabilitation center. Be careful, as the first 3 months are crucial. Wish you all the best.

Bballdad51 answered...

I had a stroke 4 years ago and lost sight in 1 eye temporarily. The best thing I can recommend is that he join a local stroke support group at your local hospital or rehab center. If he's a vet check with your local VA medical center. Remember you and he are not in this alone. Sharing with others will help his depression. Keep him active!