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Recognizing Early Signs of Stroke


Stroke pic

For more than 10 years, Dr. Zachary Lutsky served as an attending physician in the emergency department at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles. During that time, Dr. Zachary Lutsky saved the lives of many patients, including a stroke victim who later returned to the hospital to thank Dr. Lutsky and the rest of the emergency department.

The early signs of stroke may be remembered by the acronym “BE FAST.” The letter “B” stands for balance. Many patients who experience a stroke suddenly lose coordination or balance before the stroke occurs. This makes it difficult for them to touch their finger to their nose and affects their ability to walk in a straight line.

The “E” stands for eyes. One of the other early signs of stroke is a rapid change in vision, such as blindness in one eye or double vision.

The symptoms represented by “FAST” are more well-known signs of stroke. “F” refers to face drooping or numbness on one side, while “A” refers to arm weakness or numbness on one side of the body.

Speech difficulties are represented by “S” and usually include slurred or unclear speech. Many people experiencing a stroke will struggle with saying “The sky is blue,” so this sentence serves as a good test.

Finally, the “T” stands for “Time to call 911.” If any of the above symptoms are shown, call 911. Callers should write down the time the symptoms started and note if any symptoms have disappeared before emergency responders arrive.