A stroke affecting the brain stem is potentially life threatening since this area of the brain controls functions such as breathing and instructing the heart to beat. Brain stem stroke may also cause double vision, nausea and loss of coordination.
Reviewed last on: 9/16/2008
Daniel B. Hoch, PhD, MD, Assistant Professor of Neurology, Harvard Medical School, Department of Neurology, Massachusetts General Hospital. Also reviewed by by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, A.D.A.M., Inc.