Strokes occur when blood flow to the brain is interrupted, causing brain tissue damage and loss. Stroke symptoms usually happen suddenly and can include:
- Numbness or weakness of the face, arm or leg – especially on one side of the body
- Confusion, trouble speaking or understanding
- Trouble seeing in one or both eyes
- Trouble walking, dizziness, loss of balance or coordination
- Severe headache with no known cause
If you are experiencing these symptoms, please call 911.
The Medical Center of Aurora has a stroke alert program to provide patients with quick and effective stroke treatments.
Since 2009, The Medical Center of Aurora has earned The Joint Commission’s Gold Seal of Approval® and the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association’s Heart-Check mark for Advanced Certification for Primary Stroke Centers. The Gold Seal of Approval® and the Heart-Check mark represent symbols of quality from their respective organizations. Every 2 years The Medical Center of Aurora undergoes a rigourous onsite review where Joint Commission experts evaluate compliance with stroke-related standards and requirements, including program management, the delivery of clinical care and performance improvement.
Stroke Statistics (From the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association):
- Stroke is the fifth most common cause of death, ranking behind "diseases of the heart" and all forms of cancer.
- Stroke is a leading cause of serious, long-term disability in the United States.
- 700,000 people have a new or recurrent stroke each year (200,000 of those are persons with recurrent stroke).
- Approximately 50,000,000 Americans have high blood pressure, a risk factor for stroke.
Risk Factors - Changeable Factors:
- Atrial fibrillation
- Heart disease
- Artery disease
- Cocaine abuse
- Alcohol use
- High red blood cell count
- Physical inactivity or obesity
Risk Factors - Non-Changeable Factors:
- African-American ethnicity
- Age greater than 65 years
- History of stroke
- Sickle cell disease
Things you can do to help prevent a stroke:
- Be faithful with annual health physicals
- Know family history (hereditary traits)
- Stop smoking
- If diabetic, check blood sugar before each meal and at bedtime to monitor and maintain safe blood glucose levels
- Have cholesterol checked yearly
- If you have high blood pressure, monitor it daily
- Increase your exercise
- Maintain a healthy body weight
- Eat a low fat, low cholesterol American Heart Association diet