A stroke can be a scary thing to experience. Knowing the signs and symptoms of a stroke may assist in being able to take quick action and perhaps save a life.

The signs of a stroke are:

  • Sudden numbness or weakness in the face, arm, or leg, usually on one side of the body.
  • Sudden confusion, difficulty understanding or speaking.
  • Sudden trouble with vision in one or both eyes.
  • Sudden trouble walking or with loss of balance or coordination.
  • Sudden severe headaches with no known cause.

Acting F.A.S.T. may help someone get treatments desperately needed, as stroke treatments work best if recognized and diagnosed within the 3 hours of the first symptom.

  • F-Face: Ask the person to smile. Notice if one side of the face droops.
  • A-Arms: Ask the person to raise both arms. Notice if one arm drifts downward.
  • S-Speech: Ask the person to repeat a simple phrase. Notice if the speech is slurred or strange.
  • T-Time: If any of these signs are noticed, call 9-1-1 right away.

Noting the time when the symptoms first appear helps health care providers determine the best treatment.

Learn More:

Stroke [Internet] Mayo Clinic. Available from: https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/stroke/symptoms-causes/syc-20350113

Stroke Signs and Symptoms [Internet] Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Available from: https://www.cdc.gov/stroke/signs_symptoms.htm