Signs & Symptoms  

  • Sudden numbness or weakness, especially on one side of the body 

  • Sudden confusion, trouble speaking or understanding speech 

  • Sudden trouble seeing in one or both eyes 

  • Sudden trouble walking, dizziness or loss of balance 

  • ​Sudden severe headache without a known reason 



Use the BE FAST acronym to remember stroke warning signs. If you notice or experience any of these symptoms, call 911 immediately. Risk factors such as age, genetics, gender and race cannot be controlled. However, there are several risk factors that you can control. If your health care provider has already identified that you have any of these risk factors, it is very important to create a plan to help reduce your risk of stroke.

  • FACE - Ask the person to smile. Does one side of the face droop?

  • ARMS - Ask the person to raise both arms. Does one arm drift downward?

  • SPEECH - Ask the person to repeat a simple phrase. Is his/her speech slurred or strange?

  • TIME - If you observe any of these signs, call 9-1-1 immediately!

What happens after a stroke is diagnosed?


Once there is a diagnosis, some patients may be given a special drug called t-PA (tissue plasminogen activator). This drug can break up a blood clot and allow blood supply to return, thereby preventing the patient's condition from worsening and even improving it in most cases. It is critical, however, that t-PA be administered within a 3 to 4.5 hour window from when the patient was last functioning normally to the onset of stroke symptoms.