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Act FAST when there’s a chance of stroke

A stroke occurs when the blood supply to part of your brain is interrupted or reduced, depriving your brain cells of oxygen and nutrients. Within minutes, brain cells begin to die.

When you're having a stroke, it's important to get treatment as soon as possible. Literally every minute counts. So use the memory aid "FAST."

Is your Face suddenly drooping on one side? Drooping, an uneven smile, or numbness, are signs of a stroke (a stroke often affects just one side of the brain, so drooping is one-sided).

Life both arms. Does one Arm drift downward, or has it suddenly become weak? Are you experiencing a sudden loss of balance? Odd sensations or numbness, especially on one side?

Is your Speech suddenly slow, garbled, or difficult? Are you having trouble understanding others?

Time is critical if you're experiencing any of these symptoms, or similar symptoms listed below. Dial 911 immediately.

Other symptoms to look for: abrupt loss or dimness of vision in one eye; sudden loss of balance, possible accompanied by vomiting, nausea, fever, hiccups, or trouble with swallowing; sudden severe headache followed by loss of consciousness; brief loss of consciousness, unexplained dizziness or sudden falls.

If these symptoms are present in yourself, or someone near you, dial 911 immediately. About 2 million brain cells die every minute during a stroke event, so getting to the emergency room fast can significantly limit damage, and greatly improve potential recovery. Call 911 for the earliest medical intervention. Don’t attempt to drive to the emergency room.

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