Stroke: treatment, care and rehabilitation

The Zurich Stroke Center offers round-the-clock emergency and acute treatment for strokes. During the critical phase, the team cares for patients on a highly specialized monitoring ward. Possible complications are prevented or treated in this stroke unit. There, the team looks for the cause of the stroke - to prevent further strokes in the acute phase. And promotes recovery through early rehabilitation.

Acute care

The acute treatment of a stroke is divided into three steps:

  1. Emergency care outside and inside the hospital.
  2. Acute treatment in a specialized monitoring ward (stroke unit).
  3. Follow-up treatment (rehabilitation), which begins in an acute hospital and continues in a clinic specializing in neurorehabilitation or an outpatient facility.

The University Hospital Zurich offers a comprehensive treatment concept for stroke patients:

  • Acute diagnostics using CT (native, contrast medium, angiography, perfusion) or MRI (perfusion, diffusion, susceptibility weighted imaging)
  • Emergency treatment using intravenous and intra-arterial thrombolysis and mechanical thrombectomy
  • Monitoring (intermediate care) in the acute phase
  • Root cause analysis for early optimization of secondary prevention
  • Early start of rehabilitation to avoid or minimize permanent deficits

The duration of this treatment depends on the severity of the stroke and ranges from a few days (e.g. in the case of a short-term, transient circulatory disorder, TIA) to several months. Treatment in an acute hospital takes two weeks on average, but can also take several weeks in severe cases.


Stroke patients should have regular medical check-ups. In the first few months after a stroke, the intervals between visits to the doctor are usually short. Once the condition has stabilized, the individual consultations are further apart.

How often visits to the doctor are necessary depends on your state of health, concomitant illnesses, risk factors and the medication prescribed.

Around two thirds of patients who survive a stroke have physical limitations of varying degrees. Some patients are dependent on help from others. Rehabilitation is necessary so that those affected can live independently again.

Through close networking with cooperating rehabilitation clinics, we offer continuous and sustainable care. This includes acute care, rehabilitation and secondary prevention (measures to prevent new strokes) at the highest clinical and scientific level.

Responsible professionals

Andreas Luft, Prof. Dr. med.

Senior Attending Physician, Department of Neurology

Tel. +41 44 255 55 11
Specialties: Stroke, Neurorehabilitation, General neurology

Christoph Globas, PD Dr. med.

Attending Physician with extended responsibilites, Department of Neurology

Tel. +41 44 255 55 11
Specialties: Stroke care (Deputy Head of Stroke Center), Neurological emergencies (Head of Neurological Emergency), Stroke rehabilitation

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