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Stroke: Take Immediate Action with Act F.A.S.T.

Every 40 seconds, someone in America has a stroke, which is the fifth leading reason behind death and a number one reason behind long-term disability. On the subject of stroke, it’s critical to act F.A.S.T. to save lots of lives – F.A.S.T. is a simple test to inform if someone could also be having a stroke; here’s how:

  • F – Face: Ask the person to smile. Does one side of the face droop?
  • A – Arms: Ask the person to lift each arms. Does one arm drift downward?
  • S – Speech: Ask the person to repeat a straightforward phrase. Is their speech slurred or strange?
  • T – Time: For those who see any of those signs, call 911 instantly.

Acting F.A.S.T. is crucial because stroke treatments that work best can be found provided that the stroke is recognized and diagnosed inside three hours of the primary symptoms, so it will be significant to notice the time when symptoms first appear. One other useful tip to notice is to call an ambulance as a substitute of driving to the hospital – this enables medical personnel to start lifesaving treatment on the approach to the emergency department.

A stroke occurs when a blood vessel bringing blood to the brain gets blocked or ruptures. When brain cells are deprived of oxygen-rich blood, they can’t function and start to die.

Key things to look for if you think someone is having a stroke.

There are various kinds of stroke, including ischemic and hemorrhagic. Most strokes are ischemic, which occurs when blood clots or other particles block the blood vessels to the brain. Hemorrhagic strokes, that are less common, occur when an artery within the brain leaks or bursts. Transient ischemic attacks (TIAs) are sometimes called “warning strokes.” TIAs hint at a future stroke; it produces symptoms like a significant stroke but is shorter in duration. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention advises that there isn’t a approach to know to start with whether symptoms are from a TIA or a significant kind of stroke, so it’s best to call 911 instantly.

Lee Health is prepared and well-equipped to treat strokes. Our health system is home to 2 Primary Stroke Centers (Cape Coral Hospital and Lee Memorial Hospital) and a Comprehensive Stroke Center (Gulf Coast Medical Center). These designations mean that our hospitals display the next standard of clinical excellence and use a framework and consistent approach to care to deliver improved patient outcomes. There may be more details about strokes, including Lee Health’s quality and best practices, treatment and care, rehabilitation options, and more at www.LeeHealth.org, and search ‘stroke.’

I encourage anyone reading this column to confer with their healthcare team about their risk aspects for stroke and remember F.A.S.T. so you may quickly recognize and act in case you or someone you’re with experiences the signs and symptoms of a stroke.

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