(WSYR-TV) — May is American Stroke Month, a chance to let everyone know of the dangers of stroke, and that strokes can be preventable, treatable and beatable, if you act quickly.
Dr. Grahame Gould is a neurosurgeon at SUNY Upstate Medical University’s Brain and Spine Center, and an advisory board member of the American Heart Association here in Central New York. Kristy Smorol is the communications director for the Heart Association and the American Stroke Association.
Strokes can happen to anyone at any age. In fact, globally about one in four adults over the age of 25 will have a stroke in their lifetime.
A stroke happens when normal blood flow to the brain is interrupted. When parts of the brain don’t get the oxygen-rich blood they need, those affected brain cells die. You can spot the signs of a stroke with the acronym FAST – Face drooping, Arm weakness, Speech difficulty, Time to call 911.
High blood pressure is a leading cause and a controllable risk factor of stroke. Know you numbers and work with a health care professional to manage your risk.
You can learn more about the warning signs of stroke and what to do if you encounter them on the web at stroke.org.
There’s also a stroke family warm line you can touch base with weekdays at 1-888-4-STROKE.