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Comprehensive Stroke Center

Stroke Symptoms and Signs

Time is critical in stopping stroke damage. If a stroke victim seeks treatment in an Emergency Room within the first 3 hours after the onset of stroke symptoms, the patient may be a candidate for life-saving drug therapies that stop a stroke in its tracks, giving the patient the best chance of avoiding brain damage and its long-term effects.

If you suspect you or a loved one are experiencing a stroke, dial 9-1-1 immediately.

If you are over 55, have high blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes, heart disease, smoke, or are an African American, you are at risk for a stroke.

Stroke warning signs are:

  • Sudden blurred or altered vision 
  • Weakness (usually on one side) 
  • Numbness (usually on one side) 
  • Difficulty speaking or understanding speech 
  • Dizziness, imbalance

You can reduce your chances of suffering a stroke by remembering the 3Rs: 

  • Reduce risk 
  • Recognize stroke symptoms early 
  • Respond by calling 911 and seeking emergency treatment within the first 3 hours

If you think someone is having a stroke is showing stroke symptoms, call 911 FAST: 

  • F=FACE. Ask the person to smile. Does one side of the face drop? 
  • A=ARM. Ask the person to raise both arms. Does one arm drift downward? 
  • S=SPEECH. Ask the person to speak a simple sentence. Does the speech sound slurred or strange? 
  • T=TIME to call 911. If you observe any of these signs call 911 or get to the nearest hospital.

Learn more about the Comprehensive Stroke Center at Wake Forest Baptist Health. 

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Patient Priscilla Johnson: Stroke Survivor

Patient Priscilla Johnson: Stroke Survivor

While enjoying her day running errands, Priscilla stopped to get a pedicure. The pedicurist noticed something wasn’t quite right and called 911.

Last Updated: 10-01-2016
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Disclaimer: The information on this website is for general informational purposes only and SHOULD NOT be relied upon as a substitute for sound professional medical advice, evaluation or care from your physician or other qualified health care provider.

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