Perinatal Stroke Infographic


Perinatal stroke fact sheet in English

Download the printable Perinatal Stroke infographic (PDF)


Do you know?

Infants and unborn babies can have a stroke.

Perinatal stroke usually occurs between the middle of pregnancy and delivery.

Warning Signs and Symptoms


  • Seizures (repetitive twitching of face, arm or leg)
  • Apnea (pause in breathing) associated with staring
  • Lethargy, poor feeding

What to do:

Alert medical team/emergency services for possible signs of stroke.

Developing Babies

  • Decreased movement or weakness on one side of the body
  • Hand preference before age 1
  • Developmental delays

What to do:

Consult with your child’s health care team, which may include a pediatric neurologist. An MRI of the brain is usually required.

If it looks and feels like a stroke, it maybe one.

Risk Factors

The cause in most perinatal strokes remains unknown. Some factors that could lead to stroke include:

  • Congenital heart disease
  • Disorders of the placenta
  • Acute blood-clotting disorders
  • Infections

Facts to Know

  • About 1% of children with perinatal stroke have more strokes.
  • Recurrence in future pregnancies is rare (<1%).
  • In one study, perinatal stroke affected about one in 3,500 live births.
  • About 65% of children with perinatal stroke will have permanent neurological deficits. These may include one-sided weakness, epilepsy, speech and language difficulties, visual impairments, learning and memory problems, behavior changes.


Learn more at
International Alliance for Pediatric Stroke

The American Stroke Association and the International Alliance for Pediatric Stroke – collaborating to treat and beat stroke in infants and children.

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