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Local doctor gives tips on how to recognize the symptoms of strokes

Posted at 5:48 PM, May 01, 2019
and last updated 2019-05-01 17:48:15-04

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — In the recent months celebrities Luke Perry and John Singleton have died from a stroke and every 40 seconds someone in the United States has a stroke, according to the American Heart Association, but does everyone know the signs?

Basically time is of the essence. If you can recognize the signs of someone having a stroke, you could potentially save a life.

One easy way the National Stroke Association says is to use the acronym, "BE FAST."

"BE FAST." That stands for Balance, Eyes, Face, Arm, and Speech Test. It can confirm if you need to call 911.

"Inability to speak, unable to move one side of your body or the other that it's not going away," said Dr. Adam Oliver, MD Neurosurgeon.

Look for drooping of the face like an uneven smile. Also, check the eyes because a person may have sudden, blurred vision or trouble seeing. Any of these signs could mean life or death.

"A lot of people will wait to see if it's going to improve and with a stroke it's not and it needs to be treated immediately," said Dr. Oliver.

Dr. Oliver says strokes can occur without warning, but there are ways to prevent them from happening.

"There's a lot of ways to prevent it but if there's one thing that patients could do for themselves is quit tobacco all together," said Dr. Oliver.

Other ways to lessen your chances are to maintain a healthy weight, exercise regularly, and avoid using drugs and heavy alcohol use.