World Stroke Day – do you know the signs to look out for?

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October 29 is World Stroke Day – a campaign which aims to raise awareness of strokes in order to reduce the number of people who suffer as a result of them.

A stroke is a disease which may be caused by a blocked artery (known as an ischaemic stroke) or by a blood vessel inside the skull bursting, causing a bleed into and around the brain (known as a haemorrhagic stroke).

With strokes being the fourth largest cause of death in England, there is no question that the consequences of a stroke can be devastating even when diagnosed and treated promptly.

Acting fast is crucial and may be the difference between life and death. A person loses around two million nerve cells for every minute they are not being treated, and therefore it is essential that you seek medical help as soon as possible if you think that someone is displaying symptoms of a stroke.

This year, the focus is on prevention and about raising awareness of the warning signs associated with strokes. The signs of a stroke can be remembered by using the acronym BEFAST.

B – loss of balance, headache or dizziness

E – blurred eyesight

F – one side of the face drooping

A – arm or leg weakness

S – slurred speech

T – time to call for an ambulance, immediately!


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