Save a Life; Know the Signs of Stroke

A little awareness can go a long way toward saving lives. By learning to recognize the potential signs of stroke, you can help someone receive life-saving emergency care. Since stroke care is most effective when administered within a certain window, time is of the utmost importance. The stroke care team at MountainView Hospital encourages our neighbors throughout the Las Vegas area to take a few minutes to become familiar with the following signs and symptoms.

Recognize the Symptoms

When a stroke occurs, the brain is deprived of its much-needed supply of oxygenated blood. This causes severe symptoms to develop rapidly. Some of the most noticeable signs of stroke involve problems with mobility. You may observe that the patient has trouble walking, impaired balance, or poor coordination. Stroke can cause numbness, weakness, or paralysis on one side of the body . It’s also common for stroke to cause the sudden onset of confusion, difficulty speaking, problems understanding others, and vision impairment in one or both eyes. Other possible symptoms are sudden dizziness and a very severe headache.

Use the FAST Test

The FAST acronym is an easy way to remember the potential signs of stroke. “F” refers to the person’s face. Ask the patient to smile and look to see whether one side of the smile droops. For “A,” have the patient holds both arms out so that they are parallel to the floor and look to see whether one arm drifts downward. “S” stands for speech. Ask the patient to repeat a short, simple sentence to see whether he or she has trouble speaking. The last letter stands for “time.” If the patient displays even just one of these symptoms, it’s imperative to call 911 without delay. Do not try to drive the patient to the emergency care department yourself; emergency responders are equipped to assist patients while on the way to the hospital.

MountainView Hospital is a Certified Primary Stroke Center that implements strict protocols to ensure the rapid evaluation of potential stroke patients and the administration of life-saving interventions. Our emergency care team in Las Vegas is available on a 24/7 basis to respond to all types of medical emergencies. Please call 911 immediately if you think that you or someone else might require stroke care; otherwise, you can contact our Consult-A-Nurse line at (702) 233-5300.

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