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Stroke awareness is one of the biggest issues in today's society.  Too few people realize how serious of a problem stroke is until it happens to them, someone in their family or to a loved one.  The Stroke Network has been working on-line with those affected by stroke for over 20 years. 

Our mission with this stroke awareness website is to provide you with the facts of what makes stroke such a terrible disease.  Please visit our website about stroke education to provide you with the best educational explanation, including our A to Z Glossary, of definitions of terminology about stroke. 

A stroke or cerebrovascular accident (CVA) is most often due to a sudden interruption of blood flow to the brain (ischemic) or when a blood vessel in the brain leaks, causing blood to spill in the surrounding spaces of the brain tissue (hemorrhagic) resulting in damage to the affected part of the brain.

Injury to the brain tissue can result in many serious physical and cognitive deficits.  How a person recovers from a stroke depends on the area of the brain involved and the extent of damage done. Stroke is one of the common causes of disability in adults and is the third leading cause of death in the country.

Stroke requires immediate medical attention. The sooner treatment is received, the better the chances of survival. Because of improved treatment methods, less than three out of ten people who suffer a stroke die from the experience.  Thrombolytic therapy is the use of drugs to break-up the clot that is causing the disruption in blood flow to the brain.

It is crucial, imperative, and very important that you immediately go to the hospital when you first notice the warning signs of a stroke. The length of time between the first warning signs and the time you get to a hospital may be the difference between a good or poor outcome. Patients who present to the hospital within 3 hours of the first sign of a stroke have the possibility to receive Tissue Plasminogen Activator (tPA).

There are many factors that determine whether or not a patient is able to receive thrombolytic therapy. One of these factors, that you have control of, is the amount of time between the onset of symptoms and presentation to the hospital. If you get to the hospital within the 3 hour time frame and the doctor determines you are able to receive this clot-buster, you may have a better recovery.


Stroke Warning Signs

bullet Sudden numbness or weakness of the face, arm or leg, especially on one side of the body   
bullet Sudden confusion, trouble speaking or understanding   
bullet Sudden trouble seeing in one or both eyes   
bullet Sudden trouble walking, dizziness, loss of balance or coordination   
bullet Sudden, severe headache with no known cause



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Original date 3/1/96 Revised 9/24/14