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Stroke Tips: Know the symptoms, act fast

Monday, June 09, 2014

Timing is the main factor influencing if a person survives a stroke, or has to live with a severe disability after a stroke, according to Ruth Linde, RN, WellSpan’s Stroke Program coordinator.

“The sooner patients get treatment after the onset of symptoms, the better their chances for a positive outcome," said Linde.

John Mingle, MD, board-certified neurologist and medical director of WellSpan’s Stroke Program, said, “Stroke, also called a brain attack, happens when a blood clot blocks blood supply to the brain, or when a blood vessel in the brain bursts. When blood supply, and consequently oxygen, to the brain is interrupted, part of the brain can die.”

Mingle and Linde point out that women may report unique stroke symptoms, including sudden:

  • face and limb pain,
  • hiccups and/or nausea,
  • general weakness,
  • chest pain,
  • shortness of breath, and
  • heart palpitations.

Common stroke symptoms seen in both men and women include:

  • numbness or weakness of face, arm or leg – especially on one side of the body,
  • confusion, trouble speaking or understanding,
  • trouble seeing,
  • trouble walking, dizziness, loss of balance or coordination, or
  • severe headache with no known cause.

WellSpan York Hospital is certified as a Primary Stroke Center, recognized for following best practices for stroke care by The Joint Commission.

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