The human brain is much like a computer. It has the ability to process and store information, but the tiniest glitch could cause a major malfunction. A stroke, or “brain attack,” happens when a blockage in blood flow to the brain causes it to lose control of particular body functions.
The biggest difference between a computer glitch and a stroke is the amount of time that is allowed between the event and treatment. After a computer locks up, it doesn’t matter when the technician arrives for repairs. With the brain, however, time is everything. If a person does not receive stroke treatment in time, it could result in loss of vision, limb function and even death. In other words, “time is tissue” when it comes to stroke.
There is a 4.5-hour window in which a brain-saving medication called tPA can be given. This treatment is provided at Chilton Medical Center. So, if you or a loved one is experiencing a stroke, call 911 immediately and request to be taken to the nearest Primary Stroke Center.
Know Your Stroke Symptoms
It is important to learn the following stroke symptoms. Seek immediate emergency care if you experience:
- Sudden numbness or weakness of the face, arm or leg, especially on one side of the body
- Sudden confusion, difficulty with speech/comprehension
- Sudden trouble seeing in one or both eyes
- Sudden trouble walking, dizziness, loss of balancing or coordination
- Sudden severe headache with no known cause
Not sure if it's Stroke? FAST is a simple test that can help if you suspect a stroke:
Face: Ask the person to smile. Does one side of the face droop?
Arm: Ask the person to raise both arms. Does one arm drift downward?
Speech: Ask the person to repeat a simple sentence. Is their speech slurred or strange?
Time: If you observe any of these signs Call 911 immediately.
If you or a loved one is experiencing a stroke, call 911 immediately and request to be taken to the nearest Primary Stroke Center.