SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — Having a stroke can be a terrifying experience.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), every year in the U.S. more than 795,000 people have a stroke, with around 610,000 being new or first-time strokes. In the U.S. someone has a stroke every 40 seconds, and every four minutes, someone dies of one.
Early detection of a stroke is important, and knowing the symptoms of stroke can be the difference between a positive and negative outcome.
When it comes to recognizing the signs of a stroke, a widely used acronym recommended by both the American Stroke Society and the CDC to teach people how to identify a stroke is F.A.S.T.
F – Face
Pay attention to the face. When a person smiles, does one half of their face droop? Is their smile uneven or lopsided? Numbness on one side of the face is also a concerning sign.
A – Arms
Range of motion is another key indicator. Ask a person to raise both arms above their head. Does one arm drift downward, or is one arm feeling weak or numb?
S – Speech
Ask the person to repeat a simple phrase. Is their speech slurred, or is the person unable to speak or difficult to understand?
T – Time to call
If any of the signs above are present, it is time to call 9-1-1. Even if the symptoms go away, it is still important to get the person to a hospital.
“Patients who arrive at the emergency room within 3 hours of their first symptoms often have less disability 3 months after a stroke than those who received delayed care.”CDC
Other warning signs sometimes included are a lack of balance/stability, difficulty seeing or double vision, confusion or severe headache with no known cause.
Get the latest KELOLAND News headlines, weather forecasts and sports updates delivered to your email inbox. Click here to sign up!