Learn to Recognize
The Signs of a Stroke
Strokes are the nation's third leading cause of death.
Every 45 seconds, someone in America has a stroke.
Every 3 minutes, someone dies of one.
Strokes are a form of cardiovascular disease, as are heart attacks, and are sometimes refered to as "brain attacks." Blood flow to the brain is disrupted due to a clot or rupture and the lack of oxygen and other nutrients causes the brain to die. Because of the different types of stroke, the treatment will vary. But the intial signs and symptoms of a stroke are similar and it is critical that the patient get prompt medical attention.
Some of the warning signs of a stroke include:
- Sudden numbness or weakness of the face, arm or leg, especially if only one side of the body
- Sudden confusion, trouble speaking or understanding
- Sudden trouble seeing in one or both eyes
- Sudden trouble walking, dizziness, loss of balance or coordination
- Sudden, severe headache, with no known cause (sometimes described as the "worst headache ever")
If you notice these signs in someone, call 9-1-1 or your local emergency medical services agency immediately. Millions of brain cells die each minute a stroke is untreated.
Some information provided by the American Stroke Association, a division of the American Heart Association.