Stroke Assessment

Washington Regional - " A stroke is a blood clot that gets stuck in a blood vessel of the brain. It obstructs blood flow to that area of the brain and if a period of time goes by where there is no oxygen or blood flow to that area, then that area will die and that is what a stroke is. " Dr. Margaret Tremwel is the Medical Director of the Stroke Program at Northwest Arkansas Neuroscience Institute.  She says the sooner s stroke can be recognized the better it is for the patient.

"The pneumonic we use for recognition of Stroke symptoms is F.A.S.T."

F stand for Face.

" You have the person smile and if you see that one side is weaker than the other , that is a symptom of stroke."

A stands for Arm.

Have the person hold their arms straight out in front of them, if one arm drifts down or falls down that is a symptom of stroke.

S stands for Speech.

D r. Tremwell suggests that you have the person say " It's a sunny day in Arkansas" and if they're unable to speak or slur the words that is a symptom of stroke.

T stands for Time

" We have a specific time window that we can give a life saving clot buster therapy, but we have to get to the hospital in enough time so that we can do an evaluation to make sure that they're a good candidate for this therapy. So the best way to get to the emergency room is dial 911, and not only will they get you to the ER rapidly, but they will call ahead and say that you're coming so the staff is there waiting and ready  and if you're a candidate for the clot buster you can get it in the quickest amount of time."





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