• Spot a Stroke

Published on December 15, 2020

Spot a Stroke

FAST Stroke Graphic

When it comes to a stroke, minutes matter. Did you know that every 40 seconds someone in the U.S. suffers a stroke? Stroke is a leading cause of adult disability in the U.S. and the fifth leading cause of death. However, medical care has advanced in recent years and can dramatically increase a person’s chances for a healthy outcome when treated quickly.

What is a stroke?

There are two types of strokes:

  • Ischemic stroke is the most common type. It accounts for about 87% of strokes and is caused by a clot or spasm blocking blood to the brain.
  • Hemorrhagic stroke is less common and occurs when a blood vessel bursts in the brain.

When a stroke is suspected, the most important thing is to seek immediate medical attention,” said Lauren Fink, BSN, RN, Stroke Coordinator, Santa Barbara Cottage Hospital. “Calling 911 is the safest and most efficient way to get the quick medical response needed for a possible stroke.”

Think F.A.S.T. to recognize stroke symptoms

The quicker the treatment, the better the outcome. Ischemic strokes can be treated with tPA (tissue plasminogen activator), which is a clot-busting medication. Another treatment used is a clot retrieval procedure called acute thrombectomy. Both treatment options are available at Santa Barbara Cottage Hospital.

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