A stroke occurs when the flow of blood to an area of the brain is disrupted, usually by a blood clot. Within minutes, brain cells begin to die. The time window for effective treatment of stroke is about three hours. The sooner you recognize the signs of stroke and call 911, the better the chance of recovery.
When to Seek Immediate Medical Attention
If you see any sign of stroke or suspect a stroke, call 911 immediately. Remember to act FAST
Ask the person to smile. Does one side of the face droop?
Ask the person to raise both arms. Does one arm drift downward?
Ask the person to speak. Is their speech slurred or strange?
Call 911 at the first sign of stroke.
Stroke can affect people in different ways. Here are other warning signs you should know:
- Trouble seeing in one or both eyes
- Difficulty walking, dizziness, loss of balance and coordination
- Severe headache with no known cause
Learn more about stroke treatment, recovery and support from the Neuroscience & Spine Institute's Stroke Program