Stroke Education

Heart attack and stroke are life-and-death emergencies -- every second counts. If you see or have any of the listed symptoms, call 9-1-1 immediately. Not all these signs occur in every stroke. Sometimes they go away and return. If some occur, get help fast! Today stroke victims can benefit from new medications and treatments unavailable to patients in years past. For example, clot-busting drugs can stop some strokes in progress, reducing disability and saving lives. But to be effective, these drugs must be given relatively quickly after stroke symptoms first appear. So again, don’t delay -- get help right away! Stroke is America’s No. 3 killer and a leading cause of serious disability. That’s why it’s so important to reduce your risk factors, know the warning signs, and know how to respond quickly and properly if warning signs occur.

Stroke Warning Signs

The American Stroke Association says these are the warning signs of stroke:

If you or someone with you has one or more of these signs, don’t delay! Immediately call 9-1-1 or the emergency medical services (EMS) number so an ambulance (ideally with advanced life support) can be sent for you. Also, check the time so you’ll know when the first symptoms appeared. It’s very important to take immediate action. If given within three hours of the start of symptoms, a clot-busting drug can reduce long-term disability for the most common type of stroke.

Risk Factors for a Stroke

Some risk factors for Stroke are genetic and cannot be controlled. However, many of the risk factors can be reduced.

Risk factors you can control include:

Prevention of Stroke

The National Stroke Association’s "Stroke Prevention Guidelines" advises patients to:


High blood pressure is the leading cause of stroke.