Stroke and brain damage

Diabetes can affect the brain and cause stroke


Damage can occur in the brain with type 2 diabetes, mainly as a result of circulation problems.


There are a few reasons why the brain is vulnerable to stroke when a person has high blood pressure. One is that the arteries and smaller blood vessels in the brain are more brittle and can thus break open – the blood then spills out into the brain (brain haemorrhage) and parts of the brain die – that is, a stroke occurs.
A stroke can occur when damaged blood vessels allow blood to leak
The second way that a stroke can occur is through clots. These clots can break off or form in any part of the body and then travel in the blood stream into the brain where they will become stuck in a small blood vessel. This means that the part of the brain supplied by the blocked blood vessel dies – that is, a stroke occurs.
A stroke may occur when a clot travels to small blood vessel in the brain.


  1. Rizwana Kousar 2010. What is Diabetes? Diabetes and Your Community Education Series, Melbourne. © Australian Community Centre for Diabetes (ACCD).
  2. Diagrams: Margaret Mayhew, Australian Community Centre for Diabetes (ACCD), 2011
  3. Skull and brain illustration: smokedsalmon /


Did you know?

Amputations are 15 times more common in people with diabetes.

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Australian Community Centre for Diabetes Victoria university - Melbourne Australia

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