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Press Release Archive (2016)

May is National Stroke Awareness Month

Would you know a stroke if you had one?

Stroke strikes FAST and you should too!

Many people don't know that being able to recognize and respond to stroke symptoms can save lives.

A stroke or"brain attack" occurs when a blood clot blocks an artery or a blood vessel breaks, interrupting blood flow to an area of the brain. When either of these things happen, brain cells begin to die and brain damage occurs. That's why a stroke should be treated as an emergency.

Stroke AwarenessRecognizing stroke symptoms can be easy if you remember to think FAST.

Use FAST to remember the warning signs:

F = FACE: Ask the person to smile. Does one side of the face droop?
A = ARMS: Ask the person to raise both arms. Does one arm drift downward?
S = SPEECH: Ask the person to repeat a simple phrase. Does the speech sound slurred or strange?
T = TIME: If you observe any of these signs, it's time to call 9-1-1.

Each one of us is at risk for stroke but your risk level remains partially in your own hands — up to 80 percent of strokes are preventable.

There are many risk factors for stroke. Some, such as age and family history, are uncontrollable. Others, such as tobacco and alcohol use, are controllable. High blood pressure is a leading cause of stroke and should be checked yearly. Other controllable risk factors include high cholesterol, transient ischemic attack(TIA), diabetes, obesity and heart conditions such as atrial fibrillation. Ask your doctor for tips on managing your current health conditions to reduce your risk for stroke.

Lowell General Hospital has been designated a Primary Stroke Service by Massachusetts Department of Public Health (DPH), for demonstrating a solid system of emergency and neurological services that meet or exceed stringent state standards, In the event of stroke, Lowell General Hospital's Stroke Team is ready to provide timely, effective emergency treatment close to home. When it comes to stroke, immediate treatment saves lives. Read: Treating a stroke: why minutes matter.

Print out these helpful documents: Stroke 101 Fact Sheet and Stroke Information Graphic.

National Stroke Association's mission is to reduce the incidence and impact of stroke, and it is the only national organization in the U.S. that focuses 100 percent of its efforts on stroke through education and programs focused on prevention, treatment, rehabilitation and support for all impacted by stroke. Learn more at National Stroke Association.

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