When a stroke occurs, time is one of the most important factors in treatment, because damage will continue to take place in the affected area of the brain until blood flow is restored. Unfortunately, stroke is one of the leading causes of death in the United States, taking about one life every four minutes, according to the American Stroke Association. However, you can do your part in reducing the impact of stroke by knowing what to do if you suspect that someone is having a stroke.
Do Not Wait for Symptoms to Improve
It can be difficult to distinguish between stroke, transient ischemic attack, and other neurological conditions, but you should never wait it out to determine whether or not someone has suffered a stroke. Even if another condition is the cause of symptoms like slurred speech, droopy facial expressions, confusion, or loss of muscle control, it is likely a condition that also requires emergency care. If a stroke is behind these symptoms, immediate care can lower the chances of death and reduce long-term disabilities caused by damaged brain tissue.
With a life-threatening condition like stroke, you should not attempt to transport someone to the ER yourself. Calling 9-1-1 will allow emergency medical personnel to take action at the scene to facilitate more effective care once the patient arrives at the hospital. As registered ER nurse Karina Kilian explains in this video, the best thing you can do in the event of a stroke is get to the hospital right away.
As a Certified Primary Stroke Center, Riverside Community Hospital can provide the care your loved one will need following a stroke. To learn more about what to do in a medical emergency or to hear our current ER wait times, call our Consult-A-Nurse healthcare referral line at (951) 788-3463.