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Stroke Signs and Risk Factors

The Stroke Center at Loyola is committed to the prevention of strokes. Early detection is key to successful recovery. Knowing what to look for — and what lifestyle changes should be made — will lower the chance of suffering from a stroke as well as a stroke’s potential impact.

What steps can you take to prevent a stroke?
It's important to know the warning signs of stroke:

  • Sudden weakness or numbness of the face, arm or leg, especially on one side of the body
  • Sudden loss of vision, particularly in one eye
  • Difficulty speaking or understanding someone speaking
  • Sudden, severe headache
  • Sudden confusion, dizziness or unsteadiness

Respond at the first sign of stroke
Call 911 immediately if you experience any of the above symptoms or if you witness anyone experiencing these symptoms.
Do not ignore these symptoms, even if they only last 5-10 minutes.

Know the risk factors of stroke and modify them

  • High blood pressure: Get it checked every year, especially if high blood pressure runs in your family. Eat a low-sodium diet, especially if you have high blood pressure
  • Diabetes, atrial fibrillation (irregular heart beat), carotid artery disease
  • Excessive alcohol intake: If you drink, do so in moderation - no more than one or two drinks a day
  • Lack of exercise: Exercise regularly, preferably daily
  • Overweight: Maintain a healthy weight
  • Smoking:  If you smoke, quit
  • Seek medical attention for risk factors that can be treated or modified, including high cholesterol, high blood pressure, diabetes and a habit of smoking

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