(HealthDay News) -- A so-called "mini-stroke," medically known as a transient ischemic attack (TIA), triggers stroke-like symptoms that last for less than a day -- usually for an hour or two.

Anyone who has had a TIA should consider it a medical emergency and a warning sign of a potential full-blown stroke, the University of Maryland Medical Center says.

Treatment of a TIA should include steps that may ward off an actual stroke, the hospital says. It offers these suggestions:

  • Take measures to control health problems that could trigger a stroke, such as heart disease, high blood pressure, diabetes or blood disorders.
  • Ask your doctor if you should take blood-thinning drugs that can help prevent clots.
  • If you have a clog in a neck artery, recognize that you may need surgery.
  • Quit smoking.
  • Change to a healthier diet, by cutting back on salt and fat.