“If you or someone you know is experiencing stroke symptoms, one of the most important things to understand is that time is not on your side,” says John Fontanetta, MD, Chair of the Emergency Department at Clara Maass Medical Center. “Seconds count, and getting to the Emergency Department and the Primary Stroke Center as soon as you can is essential for a good outcome.”
Recognizing a stroke is not always simple, but you can save precious minutes in getting treatment by learning what to look for. The acronym B.E.F.A.S.T. will help you identify stroke symptoms.
BALANCE—sudden loss of coordination.
EYES—sudden change in vision.
FACE—drooping on one side.
ARM—weakness or numbness. When both arms are raised, one arm drifts downward.
SPEECH—difficulty, such as slurring or difficulty remembering words.
TIME—to call 911.