Understanding strokes: Time lost is brain lost
2/19/2017 4:40 PM
What is a stroke?
A stroke is when something occludes the blood flow to the arteries in the brain and causes brain tissue to die. There are 2 types of strokes:
· Hemorrhagic – Results from a bleed in the brain
Ischemic (also called “Embolic”) – A blood vessel becomes blocked and a portion of the brain becomes deprived of oxygen and will stop functioning
We also hear about “mini-strokes,” which are Transient Ischemic Attacks (TIAs). While the symptoms are the same as a major stroke, the symptoms disappear after a short period of time. TIAs should be taken seriously because they are a warning sign of a future stroke. Seek medical care immediately if you experience a TIA.
How to spot a stroke
There is an acronym called F.A.S.T. that is used to identify a stroke.
Face – Is one side of the face drooping down?
Arm – Can the person raise both arms, or is one arm weak?
Speech – Is the speech slurred or confusing?
Time – Time is critical. Make a note of what time the symptoms started. The longer you go without medical care, the more brain function you will lose.
CTMC is a certified Primary Stroke Center, which means our program meets critical elements of performance to achieve long-term success in improving outcomes for stroke patients. Every two years, the hospital is reviewed to maintain its Primary Stroke Center status.
Click here for more information about CTMC’s cardiac and stroke services.
About the Author
Janie Kothmann, RN, BS, is the chest pain and stroke coordinator at Central Texas Medical Center