Building healthier lives, free of stroke

Building healthier lives, free of stroke

10-29-2018

Monday, October 29, is World Stroke Day. On behalf of the American Stroke Association, we recognize those and their families who have been impacted by a stroke and help educate on the types, symptoms and risk factors.

Types of Stroke:

  1. Ischemic Stroke: The most common type of stroke. They occur when a blood clot blocks and artery and blood cannot reach the brain.
  2. Hemorrhagic Stroke: Occurs when a blood vessel in the brain ruptures or begins to leak, causing bleeding in the brain. *

*This bleeding occurs in weak vessels (aneurysms) and may be caused by unmonitored hypertension (high blood pressure). Although less common than ischemic strokes, they have a higher death rate.

A third event that can occur is a Transient Ischemic Attack (TIA) sometimes referred to as a ministroke. A person can experience symptoms of a stroke, but symptoms only last a few minutes. They are also caused by a temporary decrease in blood to the brain. Even though the symptoms resolve, the patient should still be seen by a doctor.

How to spot a stroke, F.A.S.T.

Face: Look at a person's smile. Is it the same on both sides or does one side droop?

Arms: Can the person raise their arms? Does one arm drift downwards?

Speech: Have the person repeat a simple sentence and see if their speech is slurred or not understandable or if they can't speak at all.

Time: Call 911 immediately and get to the hospital!

Other symptoms include:

  • Dimness in vision, usually in only one eye
  • Loss of balance
  • Nausea, vomiting, hiccups, fever and difficulty swallowing
  • Sudden, severe headache followed by loss of consciousness (hemorrhagic stroke)
  • Temporary loss of consciousness
  • Dizziness, falling or difficulty walking

Risk Factors

  • History of previous stroke or TIA
  • Hypertension (high blood pressure)
  • High cholesterol
  • Heart disease
  • Diabetes
  • Sickle cell disease
  • Obstructive sleep apnea
  • Unhealthy diet
  • Lack of physical activity
  • Obesity (overweight)
  • Excessive alcohol intake
  • Use of street drugs (cocaine & methamphetamines)
  • Smoking
  • Family history of strokes
  • Age (over 55)
  • Sex (more common in men)

Garden City Hospital is among an elite group of hospitals earning accreditation as a HFAP certified Stroke Center and Gold Plus designation by the American Heart and Stroke Association. Our team of ER physicians and nurses are annually trained to provide expert stroke care, and our defined stroke protocols ensure patients are assessed the minute they arrive. Learn more about our advanced stroke care.

For more information on stroke recognition, rehabilitation and recovery, visit http://www.strokeassociation.org/STROKEORG/.

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