A "mini stroke" is more accurately known as a "warning stroke," experts say. What you should know about the symptoms and treatment.

September 25, 2015

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Dancing With The Stars contestant Kim Zolciak-Biermann had a transient ischemic attack, or mini stroke, after flying cross-country Wednesday. The reality star, 37, best known as one of The Real Housewives of Atlanta, posted a selfie from her hospital bed Thursday morning, where sheโ€™s recovering.

โ€œThe last 24hrs have been whirlwind!โ€ Zolciak-Biermann captioned the Instagram photo. โ€œI landed yesterday morning from LAX (took the red eye right after DWTS) I got home and within minutes suffered a TIA (mini stroke) the left side of my body went completely numb and my speech was gone.โ€

โ€œI have 100% of my feeling back THANK GOD.โ€

Transient ischemic attacks, or TIAs, are more accurately known as a โ€œwarning stroke,โ€ and are often a precursor to a more severe stroke, according to the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke. In other words, despite the common moniker, TIA is anything but a "mini" event.

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Both a TIA and a stroke are caused by clots that stop the flow of blood to the brain, but in a TIA, the blockage is only temporary and the symptoms are typically gone within an hour, though they may last for up to 24.

These symptoms include weakness, numbness, or paralysis on one side your face or body, trouble speaking, dizziness, and sudden blindness or double vision.

Because TIAs have the same symptoms as a stroke, an immediate trip to the emergency room is required to determine the cause of the problem and get appropriate treatment. Anti-clotting medications like aspirin are often used to break up the blockage, but some people require surgery, depending on severity. It is also possible to have multiple clots at once.

TIA can be a sign that something bigger is coming (about a third of people who experience a warning stroke will go on to have an acute stroke), so doctors will recommend lifestyle changes, such as a healthier diet, exercise, and cutting out alcohol and cigarettes in addition to treating risk factors like high blood pressure in an effort to prevent a more serious stroke.

Zolciak-Biermann is currently still hospitalized, according to her latest Instagram, but seems to be in good spirits and surrounded by family.

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