Do You Really Know How to Spot a Stroke?

Signs of strokeYou may think you know what to do to spot stroke signs—you “act FAST.” You look for F (face drooping), A (arm weakness), and S (speech difficulty), then you take action with T (time to call 911). But you could be missing two common signs of stroke: sudden onset of visual problems and problems with balance.

Missed Signs

One physician from the University of Kentucky wants to change the mnemonic to “BE-FAST.” He looked at all patients admitted to the university for stroke in 2014 and found that about 14 percent did not have any symptoms related to face, arm, or speech. What symptoms did they have? The two major ones were balance and visual problems.

Adding B for balance and E for eyes could get people with strokes care faster, potentially saving lives, and could reduce the number of missed strokes.

The Most Important Letter to Remember

While recognizing common symptoms of stroke is important, the most important letter in both BE-FAST and FAST is T. Time is critical in stroke treatment.

The sooner someone receives treatment, the less likely they are to have brain damage. If you think you or someone you know might be experiencing a stroke, call 911 immediately.

Comprehensive Care for Stroke Patients

Learn more here about our Primary Stroke Center and our award-winning stroke care.