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Sunday, August 2, 2015

Strike a Stroke - Time to act FAST

Normally , I prefer giving lectures and sessions and not necessarily listening to one. But , when the doctor speaks you must hear and pay attention .

I was at an elite Delhi gathering recently for a personal get together when in the neighbouring hall we heard someone tell us that a lady who seemed absolutely normal walked across to get some tea and fell down .

People gathered around her, made her sit and offered her tea and asked if everything was ok.  She nodded, as per them and everything was normal hence. 

The only caveat being that within 4-5 hours of this incident she passed away . 

She suffered a Stroke .  I was both shocked and sad to hear about this and think that some of Delhi's most elite people were at that gathering and yet everyone missed out on this particular thing . And so , I decided to do my bit to spread the word across so that a life can be saved by anyone anywhere. 

Stroke occurs when the supply of blood to the brain is either interrupted or reduced. When this happens, the brain does not get enough oxygen or nutrients which causes brain cells to die .

While I am not a doctor and wouldn't get into the detailing part on the causes of a stroke but what I would want to share is the quickest prevention you can do if you see someone who has suffered a stroke. My doctors suggested the below and I am sure this can go a long way to help someone in need. 

Remember the below acronym  - FAST .

This acronym can help towards identifying the onset of stroke in someone:

  1. Face drooping: Try to ask the person to smile / show their teeth . If the person tries to smile does one side of the face droop? Check their face ? Has their mouth dropped ?
  2. Arm weakness: Ask the person to raise both the arms  . If the person tries to raise both their arms does one arm drift downward or wavers  ?
  3. Speech difficulty: Try asking the person to say something . It could be as easy as - ' Give me some tea' .  Check if the person tries to repeat a simple phrase is their speech slurred or strange? Do they understand you ?
  4. Time to call help : If any of these signs are observed, contact the emergency services of a hospital and without waiting please rush the patient to the nearest hospital and get them admitted.  The usual time that a person has post receiving a stroke is about 3 hours by which if a medical aid is given there are high chances of recovery and being back to normal .

A stroke is always a medical emergency. A stroke is not a heart attack. A stroke happens when the supply of blood to the brain is suddenly interrupted. Some strokes are fatal while others cause permanent or temporary disability.

The longer a stroke remains untreated, the greater the chance of stroke related brain damage. Emergency medical treatment soon after symptoms begin improves the chance of survival and successful rehabilitation.

The signs of stroke may occur alone or in combination and they can last a few seconds or up to 24 hours and then disappear.

If you or someone else experiences the signs of stroke, no matter how long they last, call medical help immediately.

The faster your act, the more of the person you save.

BTW - I have my own personal FaceBook page now and may I request you to  ' like' / 'comment' / 'share' , in case you like my writing or me :) .

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