Signs and Symptoms of Stroke

Published On 01/30/2012

Symptoms of a Stroke

  • Numbness or weakness on one side of the body
  • Difficulty speaking or understanding
  • Difficulty seeing
  • Difficulty walking, loss of balance or coordination
  • Severe headache 

Quick action by a highly qualified, certified stroke team can truly be the difference between life and death. 

The brain needs a constant supply of oxygen and nutrients in order to function. Even a brief interruption in blood supply can cause problems. Brain cells begin to die after just a few minutes without blood or oxygen.

A loss of brain function occurs with brain cell death. This may include impaired ability with movement, speech, thinking and memory, bowel and bladder, eating, emotional control, and other vital body functions. Recovery from stroke and the specific ability affected depends on the size and location of the stroke. A small stroke may result in problems such as weakness in an arm or leg. Larger strokes may cause paralysis (inability to move part of the body), loss of speech, or even death.

According to the National Stroke Association (NSA), it is important to learn the three R's of stroke:

  • Reduce the risk.
  • Recognize the symptoms.
  • Respond by calling 911 (or your local ambulance service).

Stroke is an emergency and should be treated as such. The greatest chance for recovery from stroke occurs when emergency treatment is started immediately.