Tuesday, October 29, 2013

World Stroke Day!

Today, October 29th, is World Stroke Day. As a spokesperson for the American Heart and Stroke Associations, I feel like it's my duty to help spread awareness and education on a daily basis about this issue. However, considering the fact that today is a HUGE day in terms of awareness, I thought I would give you all a little info about Strokes- the number 4 cause of death in the US!

A stroke happens when a blood vessel in the brain ruptures (a hemorrhagic stroke) or is occluded by a clot (an ischemic stroke). Scarily, 80% of strokes are preventable...that's right! So, part of World Stroke Day is reducing you, your family's and your friend's risk of stroke. How do you do this? Simple...the tips are the same ones that I harp on on almost every blog post. DO NOT SMOKE. Exercise regularly. Lower your blood sugar. Lower your cholesterol. Eat right. Lose weight. Pretty much the same stuff you should be doing everyday anyway!

The treatment for each stroke is different, depending on the type of stroke. Most important of all though, is recognition of the symptoms of stroke. The American Heart and Stroke Associations have developed an easy way of helping you to remember the symptoms of a stroke: FAST

F- Facial Drooping
A- Arm weakness
S- Speech Difficulty
T- Time to Call 911 !

Again...the MOST IMPORTANT thing is TIME!! One of the main treatments for a stroke is a "clot-busting" medication called tPA. This medication can only be administered from less than 3-4.5 hours from the ONSET of symptoms. TIME IS BRAIN! It's always to be better safe than sorry. If you have any doubt that you or anyone is experiencing a stroke, call 911!

Wishing you a great Tuesday!


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