Local Doctors recognize National Stroke Awareness Month

PARKERSBURG, W.Va. (WTAP) - May is National Stroke Awareness Month, and local doctors want you to be aware of the signs and symptoms of a stroke.

Strokes can happen at any age, and about one in seven strokes occur in adolescents and young adults, aged 15 to 49 years.

West Virginia ranks 7th in the nation for stroke deaths.

Stroke symptoms come on quickly, and include numbness, weakness, painful headaches, dizziness, lack of balance, confusion, difficulty talking, or trouble seeing.

The good news is strokes are preventable and treatable.

Doctors urge you to control your blood pressure, exercise and diet well, and avoid smoking.

They say if you start to see any of these symptoms you should head to a hospital right away.

"You've seen it on billboards, heard it on the radio, but in the acronym F.A.S.T., the 'F' stands for face so what you're looking for is facial droop, the 'A' is for arm, you're looking for an arm drift when they hold their arms straight out of front of them, and the 'S' is for slurred speech. The 'T' stands for time, you want to get them to the emergency room, get them to us as quickly as possible," said Janine Hiles, Stroke and Chest Pain Coordinator at Camden Clark Medical Center.

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