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CLL Life

by Anonymous

02 June 2011 at 18:52

Recognising a stroke

What is a stroke?

Definitions of strokeA stroke is a brain attack

For your brain to function, it needs a constant blood supply, which provides vital nutrients and oxygen to the brain cells. A stroke happens when the blood supply to part of the brain is cut off and brain cells are damaged or die.


Strokes are sudden and have an immediate effect

A person may become numb, weak or paralysed on one side of the body. They may slur their speech and find it difficult to find words or understand speech. Some people lose their sight or have blurred vision, and others become confused or unsteady.


Recognise stroke symptoms FAST

You can recognise a stroke using the FAST test

FACIAL weakness: Can the person smile? Has their mouth or eye drooped?

ARM weakness: Can the person raise both arms?

SPEECH problems: Can the person speak clearly and understand what you say?

TIME to call 999.

If a person fails any one of these tests, get help immediately by dialling 999

A speedy response can help reduce the damage to a person’s brain and improve their chances of a full recovery.


FAST test audio file (331 kb)

Don’t ignore temporary symptoms

If symptoms disappear within 24 hours, the person may have had a Transient ischaemic attack (TIA), which is also called a mini-stroke. A TIA is still a medical emergency, because it can lead to a major stroke.

Above excerpts from: The Stroke Associations' information section: 


As the majority of us are not spring chickens and we may also carry co morbidities that add to stroke risk, We may be better placed to deal with risk than the general population as we are more closely observed.

However it is down to us and our carers to recognise symptoms and to react quickly . Remember that common sense and knowledge of someone can play a big part. A nurse told me today that; "From a nurse perspective early signs I have often noticed are  the person being just "not right"  and also unusual irritability - just acting out of character." I myself received a stroke to the cerebellum, immediate violent uncontrollable vomiting and severe vertigo preceded and accompanied visual impairment. For example.



Text transcription of the Act FAST video




Nick stroke survivor on W&W


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