• CareAccess MSO

American Stroke Awareness Month

For American Stroke Awareness Month, think fast—and FAST. That’s the shortcut for assessing four major stroke signs, and since time is of the essence when it comes to treating strokes, you’ll want to bear both in mind.

Here’s how the first FAST helps us learn about recognizing stroke:

  • F: Facial drooping

  • A: Arm weakness

  • S: Speech difficulties

  • T: Time

Time, of course, means that the sooner you take action if you’re experiencing, or observing in others, facial drooping, arm weakness, and speech difficulties, the better the prognosis may be for recovery. Getting to the hospital within three hours of first symptoms of stroke allows for thrombolytic medication to break up blood clots.

Beyond FAST, here are a few more symptoms to watch for that can come on suddenly:

  • Leg numbness or weakness

  • Confusion

  • Vision trouble in one or both eyes

  • Trouble walking, dizziness, or loss of coordination

  • Severe headache with no known cause

Every 40 minutes, someone in the United States has a stroke—including healthy, younger people with no known risk factors. FAST and fast thinking could save a life.