CommunityHealth Fix


Signs and Symptoms of a Stroke—Are you at risk?

Posted at 7:27 AM, May 21, 2015

According to the Center for Disease Control, nearly 800,000 people die each year from strokes. Recognizing the sudden warning signs of stroke and alerting 9-1-1 immediately could save a life. There is a useful acronym to help you remember the signs of stroke called FAST.

Warning signs of stroke

  • Sudden numbness or weakness of face, arm or leg, especially on one side of the body
  • Sudden trouble seeing in one or both eyes
  • Sudden confusion and trouble speaking
  • Sudden dizziness, trouble walking, loss of balance
  • Sudden and severe headache with no known cause

Risk factors of stroke

  • Excess weight
  • High cholesterol/high blood pressure/diabetes
  • Lack of physical activity
  • Smoking
  • Alcohol use

Remember FAST
F – Face: Ask the person to smile and look for face drooping
A – Arms: Ask the person to raise both arms and watch for one arm drifting down
S – Speech: Ask the person to repeat a sentence and listen for slurring
T – Time: If any of these signs are observed, call 9-1-1 immediately