TCRH Raises Stroke Awareness for Women & the Community

May 1, 2015

In recognition of May as National Stroke Awareness Month, Twin County Regional Healthcare is promoting stroke awareness with this year’s focus on women. Over 795,000 individuals experience a stroke each year with about 60% of the deaths occurring in women.  Although more women have breast cancer than strokes, more women actually die from strokes than from breast cancer. 

Stroke, also called a brain attack, happens when blood flow to the brain is interrupted because of a clot in a blood vessel or bleeding from a vessel into the brain.  The symptoms of a stroke include:
•    Sudden numbness or weakness of the face, arm or leg - especially on one side of the body 
•    Sudden confusion, trouble speaking or difficulty understanding
•    Sudden trouble seeing in one or both eyes
•    Sudden trouble walking, dizziness, loss of balance or coordination
•    Sudden severe headache with no known cause

For women, there are additional symptoms that may signal a stroke:
•    Sudden face and limb pain
•    Sudden hiccups
•    Sudden nausea
•    Sudden general weakness 
•    Sudden chest pain
•    Sudden shortness of breath
•    Sudden palpitations 

Unique factors that increase the risk for stroke include: taking birth control pills, experiencing preeclampsia and eclampsia during pregnancy, hormone replacement therapy, large waists (greater than 35.2 inches) and high triglycerides as well as migraine headaches especially with auras.  Women who feel they are at risk for a stroke should contact their physician and discuss ways to reduce this risk. 

Two million brain cells die every minute while a person is experiencing a stroke. Therefore, time is brain and it is important for anyone having a stroke to call 911 immediately for emergent transportation to the nearest stroke center. 

As a Joint Commission Certified Primary Stroke Center, Twin County Regional Hospital offers services for diagnosing and treating stroke patients including neurologic evaluation, via Teleneurology, and is able to provide high quality, research-based stroke care. The goals of stroke care are early treatment including clot busting medications, early rehabilitation, prevention of complications and education. Arriving at a stroke center within three hours from symptom onset provides the patient more treatment options leading to better recovery and rehabilitation.

For more information on stroke awareness and prevention or to find a physician, please call (276) 236-1612 or 1-800-424-DOCS (3627) or visit www.tcrh.org.