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Safety | Recognizing a Stroke

Recognizing a Stroke Could Save a Life

During a barbeque, a woman stumbled and took a little fall. She assured everyone she was fine. Concerned friends offered to call paramedics. She said her new shoes had just caused her to trip over a brick. While she appeared a bit shaken up, she went about enjoying herself the rest of the evening.

Later that evening her husband called to tell everyone that his wife had been taken to the hospital. She had actually suffered a stroke at the barbeque and did not survive.

Sometimes symptoms of a stroke are difficult to identify. Unfortunately, the lack of awareness spells disaster. Undetected strokes can leave victims with severe brain damage and/or lead to death. Immediate response is crucial to reversing the effects of a stroke and/or saving lives. According to neurologists, victims need to be identified, diagnosed, and treated within three hours of the event.

Here is how three simple questions may assist in identifying a stroke victim (notice how the questions are associated to the word STROKE). Ask the individual to:

  • SMILE
  • TALK by having them repeat A SIMPLE SENTENCE (coherently) (i.e., It is sunny out today.)
  • RAISE BOTH ARMS

If the individual has trouble with ANY ONE of these tasks, emergency assistance is recommended.

Sometimes a stroke victim can even be identified by asking the person to "stick out their tongue." If the tongue appears to go to one side or the other, this may be an indication of a stroke.

STROKE AWARENESS COULD SAVE A LIFE.