The Warning Signs of Stroke
A stroke occurs about every 40 seconds. Each year, about 795,000 Americans have a stroke. Do you know the warning signs?
Sometimes symptoms of stroke develop gradually. But if you are having a stroke, you are more likely to have one or more sudden warning signs like these.
- Numbness or weakness in your face, arm, or leg, especially on one side
- Confusion or trouble understanding other people
- Trouble speaking
- Trouble seeing with one or both eyes
- Trouble walking or staying balanced or coordinated
- Severe headache that comes on for no known reason
What to Do if You Have Symptoms of Stroke
Remember that a stroke is a medical emergency. Sometimes it is even called a brain attack.
- Don't ignore stroke warning signs - even if you have just one or if symptoms are mild or go away.
- Don't wait! Every minute counts.
- Call 911 or emergency medical services (EMS) if you have one or more symptoms for more than a few minutes. An ambulance can get you to a hospital without delay.
- Check the time when symptoms begin. This is important information to share when you arrive at the hospital.
What if you're with someone else who might be having stroke symptoms but you're not sure?
Take charge and call 911. Some people may deny that there is a serious problem. They don't want others to make a fuss. Or they might ask, "What's the big rush?"
It may help to remember this: What's the worst thing that can happen if this isn't a sroke? An unnecessary trip to the hospital.
But what's the worst thing that can happen if you ignore the problem and it turns out to be a stroke? The result could be much worse.