Use the letters in F.A.S.T. to spot signs of a stroke and know when to call 911.
Member of the University of Cincinnati Stroke Team
For patients who are having a stroke, MMH is proud to partner with the University of Cincinnati Stroke Team. This relationship allows for faster diagnosis and treatment of strokes, thereby increasing the odds of a full recovery. When necessary, MMH uses telemedicine technology to communicate with UC's Stroke Team. Our emergency services department has received thorough training and evaluation to ensure our staff is well prepared to recognize and treat stroke patients quickly and effectively.
What is a Stroke?
A stroke occurs when the blood supply to part of your brain is interrupted or severely reduced, depriving brain tissue of oxygen and nutrients. Within minutes, brain cells begin to die. During a stroke, prompt treatment is crucial, and quick action can minimize brain damage and potential complications.
What are the Symptoms of a Stroke?
F.A.S.T. is an easy way to remember the signs of a stroke. When you see these signs, you will know that you need to call 911 fast.
F.A.S.T. stands for:
- F is for face drooping – One side of the face is drooping or numb. When the person smiles, the smile is uneven.
- A is for arm weakness – One arm is weak or numb. When the person lifts both arms at the same time, one arm may drift downward.
- S is for speech difficulty – You may notice slurred speech or difficulty speaking. The person can’t repeat a simple sentence correctly when asked.
- T is for time to dial 911 – If someone shows any of these symptoms, even if they go away, call 911 immediately. Make note of the time the symptoms first appeared.
Other symptoms of stroke also may include severe headache, dizziness, loss of balance, loss of vision or double vision. Surprisingly, pain is not a frequent symptom of ischemic stroke, although patients with hemorrhagic stroke may complain of severe headache. If you experience any of these symptoms, even if they seem to get better, call 911 right away.