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Stroke is a Medical Emergency

July 6, 2019


A stroke occurs when blood flow is interrupted to the brain. There are two types of stroke, ischemic or hemorrhagic. A transient ischemic attack (TIA), sometimes called a mini stroke is also considered a medical emergency. Treatment is still needed FAST.

The acronym FAST is a tool which makes recognizing stroke easy to remember. Face – is it drooping? Arms – can you raise both? Speech – is it slurred or jumbled? Time – call 911 right away.

We need to be aware of benefits of calling 9-1-1 and the expertise that first responders and paramedics bring to stroke care. They are trained to recognize the signs of stroke and mobilize the patient quickly. Time sensitive management of stroke care including monitoring vital signs and blood glucose are completed by paramedics. The paramedics determine the time the person was last known to be well, any existing health conditions, etc. The paramedics pre-alert the hospital which is critical in activating the process of stroke care. A stroke can be mild, moderate or severe which is why FAST evaluation and treatment are needed. Act FAST - Time is brain.

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Thunder Bay Regional Health Sciences Foundation
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