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Proper Stroke Response

ODESSA -- If you thought someone was suffering from a stroke, would you know which symptoms to look out for?
ODESSA -- If you thought someone was suffering from a stroke, would you know which symptoms to look out for?

"I think facial numbness is one and then your speech is hard to understand."

"I know it affects your face, slurred speech, usually occurs on the left side where you have difficulty walking," said Twana Simpson.

According to Karry Morris from Medical Center Hospital, symptoms of a stroke include sudden numbness or weakness in the face, arm or leg, on one side of the body, confusion,trouble walking or dizziness and headaches.

While a stroke and heart attack have the same mechanism, Morris says people generally confuse stroke symptoms with heart attack symptoms.

"Usually you have some blockages in your heart, some plaque build up and you also have that in your brain. And what happens is, usually a clot comes along, blocks the circulation to everything past that so then you have a stroke. A stroke happens in the brain and a heart attack happens in the heart," said Morris.

Morris says in a three month time period, MCH saw about 85-stroke patient but, only two showed up in time to receive treatment.

Simpson says her grandfather suffered from two strokes before a third one took his life.

"A piercing headache that will not go away is also a symptom of a stroke but, they just don't think," Simpson said.

Apart from living a healthy non-smoking lifestyle, Morris says the best way to be treated for a stroke is be aware of the signs and symptoms. And act sooner rather than later.

"If you show up past about three hours or so, your brain begins to die and that tissue becomes fragile. And if you put a big blood thinner in there you're gonna bleed. So, you have to get here early," Morris said.

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