For patients
Patients' rights A Patient is a person who has applied for help to a healthcare facility or healthcare specialist. read more
Prevention Certain risk factors can increase your chances of having a stroke. If you have identified personal risk factors, work with your doctor to reduce your personal risk. Also try to eliminate some risk factors. read more
Rehabilitation The goal of stroke rehabilitation is to help you relearn skills you lost when a stroke affected part of your brain. Stroke rehabilitation can help you regain independence and improve your quality of life. read more
Treatment for stroke Care on a stroke unit is one of the most effective ways of treating a person after a stroke. A stroke unit is an area in a hospital where there is a specialized stroke team. read more
Where to go read more

Symptoms of stroke

If you suspect a stroke call 103 immediately and ask for an ambulance as soon as possible.

In case the symptoms disappear before the ambulance arrives, it is still extremely important to go to hospital and have a medical assessment.

Recognizing the signs of a stroke

The signs and symptoms of a stroke may differ from person to person, but usually they occur suddenly.

The symptoms will depend on the part of the brain affected and the extent of the damage.

The main stroke symptoms can be remembered with the word F.A.S.T.:

  • Face – a person may not be able to smile. A face may be dropped on 1 side.
  • Arms – a person with suspected stroke may not be able to lift both arms and keep them in the same level because of weakness or numbness in 1 arm.
  • Speech – a person may not be able to talk and may have problems understanding what is said to him | her. The speech may be slurred.
  • Time – time is critical! Call 103 immediately if you notice any of these signs or symptoms.

It's important for everyone to be aware of these signs and symptoms.

Other possible symptoms

Symptoms mentioned above identify most strokes, but occasionally a stroke can cause different symptoms.

Other symptoms and signs may include:

  • paralysis of 1 side of the body
  • sudden loss or blurring of vision (1 eye or both)
  • dizziness, loss of balance or an unexplained fall
  • confusion
  • severe headache
  • difficulty swallowing
  • loss of consciousness

Symptoms of a stroke that disappear quickly (from few minutes to few hours, disappearing completely in less than 24 hours) may mean you had a mini-stroke or a transient ischemic attack (TIA). These symptoms should also be treated as a medical emergency to reduce the chances of having another stroke.