"F-A-S-T" - the signs of stroke.

nd5056

DIS Veteran
Joined
Dec 10, 2008
The American Stroke Association uses the acronym "F-A-S-T" to help people remember the signs of stroke and know when to call 911.

F - Face drooping: Does one side of the face droop or is it numb? Ask the person to smile. Is the person's smile uneven or lopsided?

A - Arm Weakness: Is one arm weak or numb? Ask the person to raise both arms. Does one arm drift downward?

S - Speech: Is speech slurred? Is the person unable to speak or hard to understand? Ask the person to repeat a simple sentence.

T - Time to Call 911: If the person shows any of these symptoms, even if the symptoms go away, call 9-1-1 and get them to the hospital immediately.

Additional signs of a stroke can include: sudden numbness or weakness of the face, arm or leg, 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, loss of balance or coordination; and sudden severe headache with no known cause.
 

mamamary

DIS Veteran
Joined
Oct 11, 2006
I had read this earlier today and told my husband about it when he got home from work.
 
  • Queen of the WDW Scene

    It's only MY opinion, YOU decided to quote it.
    Joined
    Aug 24, 2016
    Trouble is the one and only time I saw someone having a stroke they showed none of that.
    It was my grandma. We were both asleep in her bed when suddenly she started coughing/not being able to breath and she was pushing me to wake me up.
    I ran to get my grandpa.
     

    nd5056

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Dec 10, 2008
    I understand that another test is to try drinking a little water, just to see if it's possible to swallow.
     

    luvsJack

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Apr 3, 2007
    When my mom had a stroke, the only sign she had was that she couldn’t remember words. She would be talking and forget, like a word we all say every day. No slurring at all just forget a word like “together” or “ever”.

    She had gone about her whole day with that being the only thing. She spent the day with her sisters so we didn’t see it. One sister called me and the other one called my sister so we were at her house when she got home and we took her to the hospital.
     
  • DopeyDame

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jul 8, 2010
    Good reminder -thanks!

    The 'warning signs' test I have heard is this:
    Smile
    Say a silly sentence
    Swing your arms over your head

    If the smile is lopsided or droopy, if they can't repeat a silly sentence clearly, or if both arms don't life over the head simultaneously, those are concerns for a stroke.
     

    Dan Murphy

    We are family.
    Joined
    Apr 20, 2000
    My wife had a TIA several years ago.

    She had picked up our grandson (about 7 at the time) from school, as we do every day. It is about a 10 minute drive from the school to our house. She came back home about 90 minutes later. I figured maybe she went for a snack treat with him or maybe shopping a bit. When she got home, I asked her where they went. She said, came right home. I said, you couldn't have, it's an hour and a half. I asked grandson, he said, I don't know, Nana was just driving around.

    Obviously, I was concerned. She also seemed wavering a bit in her stance. I walked her to the bedroom, had her lay down. I called my son (firefighter/paramed) who works in a different town. He told me to have her make a big cheesy smile (Fast). That seemed fine. He told me to have here hold out her arms, like she was carrying a platter of food (fAst). Seemed fine. He told me to let him talk to her (faSt). Responses didn't sound quite right. After that, phone back to me. My son told me to get her to the ER, right away. I asked him, like me taking her right away, or call 911 right away? He said, Time to call 911 right away, now.

    I called 911. They were here in 4 minutes. ER took her in, did various things they do with suspected stroke. After several hours, they checked her in as an inpatient for 2 days. After lots of tests, CT, MRI, etc, they diagnosed as a TIA. So far, she has been fine since then, but we are cognisant of that past episode.
     

    tazdev3225

    <font color=darkorchid>I sucked my thumb up with t
    Joined
    Apr 2, 2008
    My SIL had a stroke at 32 years old. He is stubborn as a rock and refused to have 911 called. He was worried it would scare the kids and I can understand that, they knew something was wrong. My daughter was at work and called me. I was at his house within 10 minutes of the onset of symptoms and had him in the ER within 15 minutes. Thankfully we live very close to a Trauma hospital and I only live 5 minutes from them. Granted I blew every red light and drove about 70 miles an hour when I could. The hospital was able to counteract the effects in the time frame and reverse the damage. Two years later he is fine.

    The following month my husband was in the hospital after foot and ankle surgery. He was a stroke risk and a fall risk. I didn't realize as I sat next to him he was showing the early warning signs of a stroke and I assumed that since he was in a hospital they were watching him for any warning signs. At 2 AM the hospital called to let me know he fell out of bed! The following day I found out that he had a stroke. He was in a hospital, a stroke accredited hospital, and they only found out he had a stroke when they found him on the floor after falling out of bed. He had a second stroke 1 month later right after he came home from rehab.

    DH was only 58 years old at the time. Thankfully he is mostly recovered and he was already in an early retirement program so we get his full pension. He is virtually blind in one eye and has numbness and weakness that will never go away so he will never work again. He was a sheriff and they sort of frown on having semi blind men driving custodies or handling a gun. I try to keep a sense of humor with the struggles we have now but he is still here and I am thankful for that. I still want to know how the nursing staff and dr.'s missed all the signs but I guess I will never know.

    Ironically he had stroke 1 on my grandson's birthday and stroke 2 on my SIL's birthday. I will NEVER forget the dates.
     
  • Hikergirl

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Feb 28, 2016
    My dh was 46 when he had what was most likely a stroke.
    I am embarrassed because I didn't really know it was serious. He got up one morning and went to use the bathroom, came out and lost feeling in his entire left side. He was alert, not slurring words, no confusion or anything like that, just more surprised than anything. He kind of chalked it up to a pinched nerve in his neck. I asked him if we should call 911 or to the ER and he said no, but I urged him to let me take him to Urgent Care. By that time he was back to normal so they set up an appt with a neurologist and an MRI later that afternoon, so we went back home and he fell asleep on the couch. When we woke up he started to get numb again so that time we went to the ER without hesitation.
    It is a blur from there, he was rushed in, taken for all kinds of test, stayed for 2 nights observation and in the end no actual diagnosis.
    It could have been a stroke, but as a migraine sufferer they were convinced it was a hemiplegic migraine.
    He does have permanent side effects, and after numerous neurologists and tests, and cardiologists and more tests he has found that he he has some underlying risk factors for strokes so we are pretty sure that is what he had, but never got that as an actual diagnosis.
    He's a healthy guy, he's not overweight, he eats pretty well and exercises, on the outside nobody would think stroke risk, but you never know what is going on inside and that is the scariest part. It's been 2 1/2 years since and I worry every day that he is going to have another one, and even though I know what to look for and call 911 immediately, it terrifies me that we have to watch for this for the rest of his life.

    :hug: to all who have been effected by strokes, either yourself a your loved one.
     

    soccerdad72

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Oct 23, 2012
    My FIL (who was a hospital CEO) happened to be in the lobby of the Cleveland Clinic waiting to see his cardiologist for a follow up a few weeks after heart surgery when he caught himself slurring his words. He knew right away what the meant, but unfortunately for him, he was basically screwed from birth and never knew it. Turns out, he was born with one of the arteries running to his brain stem (don't know the medical terminology) much smaller than they typically should be, so he in essence only ever really had one artery to his brain. And when that one had the clot, the stroke pretty much killed him right away. We knew that strokes could be lethal, but up to that point, nearly everyone we had heard that had a stroke had been able to recover from them, usually with some therapy. He didn't stand a chance, though. :(
     

    Hikergirl

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Feb 28, 2016
    My FIL (who was a hospital CEO) happened to be in the lobby of the Cleveland Clinic waiting to see his cardiologist for a follow up a few weeks after heart surgery when he caught himself slurring his words. He knew right away what the meant, but unfortunately for him, he was basically screwed from birth and never knew it. Turns out, he was born with one of the arteries running to his brain stem (don't know the medical terminology) much smaller than they typically should be, so he in essence only ever really had one artery to his brain. And when that one had the clot, the stroke pretty much killed him right away. We knew that strokes could be lethal, but up to that point, nearly everyone we had heard that had a stroke had been able to recover from them, usually with some therapy. He didn't stand a chance, though. :(
    I'm so sorry for your loss.
    That was one of the things that dh found about himself through all the testing.
     

    ahutton

    WDW Bride Dec 6, 1996
    Joined
    Jun 1, 2000
    i had a stroke over the summer.any other survivors/warriors here? I'm interested in others experiences.

    My boss knew this, did it and had paramedics there within minutes, Probably why I survived what very few do, Hemorrhagic stroke.
     
    Last edited:

    Dan Murphy

    We are family.
    Joined
    Apr 20, 2000
    My dh was 46 when he had what was most likely a stroke.
    I am embarrassed because I didn't really know it was serious. He got up one morning and went to use the bathroom, came out and lost feeling in his entire left side. He was alert, not slurring words, no confusion or anything like that, just more surprised than anything. He kind of chalked it up to a pinched nerve in his neck. I asked him if we should call 911 or to the ER and he said no, but I urged him to let me take him to Urgent Care. By that time he was back to normal so they set up an appt with a neurologist and an MRI later that afternoon, so we went back home and he fell asleep on the couch. When we woke up he started to get numb again so that time we went to the ER without hesitation.
    It is a blur from there, he was rushed in, taken for all kinds of test, stayed for 2 nights observation and in the end no actual diagnosis.
    It could have been a stroke, but as a migraine sufferer they were convinced it was a hemiplegic migraine.
    He does have permanent side effects, and after numerous neurologists and tests, and cardiologists and more tests he has found that he he has some underlying risk factors for strokes so we are pretty sure that is what he had, but never got that as an actual diagnosis.
    He's a healthy guy, he's not overweight, he eats pretty well and exercises, on the outside nobody would think stroke risk, but you never know what is going on inside and that is the scariest part. It's been 2 1/2 years since and I worry every day that he is going to have another one, and even though I know what to look for and call 911 immediately, it terrifies me that we have to watch for this for the rest of his life.

    :hug: to all who have been effected by strokes, either yourself a your loved one.
    :hug:'s
    My FIL (who was a hospital CEO) happened to be in the lobby of the Cleveland Clinic waiting to see his cardiologist for a follow up a few weeks after heart surgery when he caught himself slurring his words. He knew right away what the meant, but unfortunately for him, he was basically screwed from birth and never knew it. Turns out, he was born with one of the arteries running to his brain stem (don't know the medical terminology) much smaller than they typically should be, so he in essence only ever really had one artery to his brain. And when that one had the clot, the stroke pretty much killed him right away. We knew that strokes could be lethal, but up to that point, nearly everyone we had heard that had a stroke had been able to recover from them, usually with some therapy. He didn't stand a chance, though. :(
    :hug:'s
    i had a stroke over the summer.any other survivors/warriors here? I'm interested in others experiences.

    My boss knew this, did it and had paramedics there within minutes, Probably why I survived what very few do, Hemorrhagic stroke.
    Wow, ahutton!! :hug:'s You are too young. Great that your boss knew what to do, and then did it. Hoping you have no lingering effects and that you are doing well.
     

    fly girl

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jan 20, 2012
    Watched my dear FIL have several strokes. He was like a cat, had 9 lives. Droopy smile/face was the first tell tale for us. Don't delay, even if you misread the cue who cares, the person can get life saving medication if you don't delay.

    Also, another PSA ... QUIT SMOKING! Neurologist told us without a doubt smoking is the key factor that lead to his strokes. My FIL was a very brilliant man (nuclear engineer) but a dunce when it came to nicotine. He was too young and didn't get to see his grandchildren for very long. He was robbed of his better years due to cigarettes. :sad1:
     

    DisneyDebbie

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jul 1, 2007
    Wow, my MILaw is in the hospital right now from a stroke. As it happens she noticed slurry speech a few weeks ago, but thought she was just tired. Then this past Sunday had slurred speech and arm weakness. we brought her to the ER, and she’s hopefully making a full recovery. AND she’s already said that she won’t quit smoking, well alrighty then 😕
     

    ahutton

    WDW Bride Dec 6, 1996
    Joined
    Jun 1, 2000
    :hug:'s
    :hug:'s
    Wow, ahutton!! :hug:'s You are too young. Great that your boss knew what to do, and then did it. Hoping you have no lingering effects and that you are doing well.
    Thanks Dan. I agree 48 is too young. I didn't pay close enough attention to my body saying slow down and destress. I'm left side paralyzed. Doing therapy learning to walk again and hoping it will wake up eventually. For now we are going to try a Boardwalk night with a wheelchair. With the medicine in the hospital Ii kept thinking that's where I was and wanted to visit the bakery for coffee and a muffin and to watch the sunrise on the water. So now we need to do that!

    Since I dont smoke I'll add another PSA - take blood pressure seriously. Mine was borderline high. I had made healthy lifestyle changes and lost 50 pounds. Then I had a stroke.
     

    DisneyDebbie

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jul 1, 2007
    Thanks Dan. I agree 48 is too young. I didn't pay close enough attention to my body saying slow down and destress. I'm left side paralyzed. Doing therapy learning to walk again and hoping it will wake up eventually. For now we are going to try a Boardwalk night with a wheelchair. With the medicine in the hospital Ii kept thinking that's where I was and wanted to visit the bakery for coffee and a muffin and to watch the sunrise on the water. So now we need to do that!

    Since I dont smoke I'll add another PSA - take blood pressure seriously. Mine was borderline high. I had made healthy lifestyle changes and lost 50 pounds. Then I had a stroke.
    :hug: Best wishes on your recovery
     



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