Stroke symptoms usually come on suddenly, and each person’s symptoms can be different. The warning signs of a stroke are:
Weakness and numbness in the face, arms, and legs are usually on one side of the body
Difficulty speaking or understanding
Vision problems, such as blurring or loss of vision in one or both eyes
Dizziness, problems with balance and coordination
Problems with movement or walking
Fainting or convulsions
Severe headache for no apparent reason, especially if it occurs suddenly
Other less common symptoms of stroke include:
Sudden nausea and vomiting, not caused by a viral illness
Short-term loss or change in consciousness, such as fainting, confusion, seizures, or coma
Transient ischemic attack
A transient ischemic attack (TIA), also known as a mini-stroke, can cause symptoms similar to those of a stroke. But the symptoms of TIA are passing. They can last a few minutes or up to 24 hours. If you suspect a stroke or TIA, seek immediate medical attention.
FAST, an acronym for the National Stroke Association, can help you quickly determine if someone is having a stroke.
F (face): Ask the person to smile. Does one side of his face droop?
A (hands): Ask the person to raise both hands. One arm down?
S (Speech): Ask them to repeat simple phrases (such as “You can’t teach an old dog new tricks”). Is speech slurred or difficult to understand?
T (Time): Call 911 immediately if you experience any of these symptoms.
If you or anyone else has any of these symptoms, act FAST and call 911. Time lost to stroke.