July 25, 2016
KNOW THE SIGNS OF STROKE
THINK F A S T
Is it a stroke? Check it out the FAST way! Call 111 immediately if you suspect a stroke!
The FAST campaign encourages New Zealanders to learn the key signs of stroke and to act fast by calling 111 if they suspect a stroke. Prompt action can save lives, improve recovery and reduce ongoing costs from stroke to families, caregivers and the health services. It is vital to recognise when someone is having a stroke and to start treatment as soon as possible, because the sooner medical treatment begins, the more likely brain damage can be reduced and a better outcome achieved.
What are the signs of stroke?
The signs and symptoms of stroke usually come on suddenly. The type of signs experienced will depend on what area of the brain is affected.
Common first signs of stroke include:
Sudden weakness and/or numbness of face, arm and/or leg especially on one side of the body
Sudden blurred or loss of vision in one or both eyes
Sudden difficulty speaking or understanding what others are saying
Sudden loss of balance or an unexplained fall or difficulty controlling movements, especially with any of the other signs
How can you tell if someone is having a stroke?
By learning to recognise the symptoms of stroke you could save a life! Learn the FAST check.
FACE - Is their face drooping on one side? Can they smile?
ARM - Is one arm weak? Can they raise both arms?
SPEECH - Is their speech jumbled or slurred? Can they speak at all?
TIME - Time is critical. Call 111.
Stroke is always a Medical Emergency - Act FAST
Even if the symptoms go away quickly or don’t cause pain you should call 111 immediately.
The FAST campaign is a joint initiative between the Stroke Foundation, Ministry of Health and Health Promotion Agency.
Resources: FAST posters, fliers, wallet cards and fridge magnets are available from National Office on firstname.lastname@example.org or your regional Stroke Foundation office.