Thursday, March 31, 2011

Recognizing a Stroke

A stroke occurs when part of the blood flow to the brain is suddenly cut off. This occurs when arteries in the brain rupture or become blocked.

Recognizing Stroke

The signs of a stroke include:
  • Sudden weakness or numbness of the face, an arm, or a leg on one side of the body
  • Blurred or decreased vision
  • Problems speaking
  • Dizziness or loss of balance
  • Sudden, severe headache
  • Sudden confusion
To assess for a possible stroke, use the mnemonic FAST:
Face - Ask the person to smile. Does one side of the face droop?
Arms - Ask the person to extend both arms out. Does one arm drift downwward?
Speech - Ask the person to repeat a simple sentence. Are the words slurred?
Time - If the person shows any of these signs, time is important. Call 9-1-1.

Care for Stroke
  1. Call 9-1-1
  2. Have the victim rest in a comfortable position
  3. Monitor breathing

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