Stroke Symptoms and Signs
If you suspect you or a loved one are experiencing a stroke, dial 9-1-1 immediately.
Are you at risk for a stroke?
Stroke is the fourth-leading cause of death in the U.S. and the leading cause of serious, long-term disability. A stroke can happen to anyone. If you are over age 55, have high blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes, heart disease, smoke, or are African American, you are at an increased risk for a stroke. Download a guide to understanding strokes, prevention and care.
Warning Signs of a Stroke
Recognizing stroke signs and acting quickly can literally save your life. The 5 most common warning signs of stroke are:
- Sudden numbness or weakness of the face, arm or leg, especially on one side of the body
- Sudden confusion, trouble speaking or understanding someone speaking to you
- Sudden trouble seeing in one or both eyes
- Sudden difficulty walking, dizziness or loss of balance
- Sudden severe headache with no known cause
Call 911 or visit the nearest emergency room if you have any of these symptoms. Every minute is important.
Recognizing a Stroke in Others
- 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.
Visit the Comprehensive Stroke Center for more information and remember that you can reduce your chances of having a stroke by following the 3Rs:
- Reduce risk factors.
- Recognize stroke symptoms early.
- Respond by calling 911 and seek emergency treatment within the first 3 hours.