Stroke Signs & Treatment

A stroke is a life-threatening event where blood flow to the brain is blocked temporarily, which can cause brain damage, long-term disability or even death.

Warning Signs

Warning signs for a stroke can come quick. These are the best ways to recognize if someone is having a stroke. Remember to BE FAST.

  • BALANCE: Ask the person to stand. Are they having trouble with coordination or do they have a headache or dizziness?
  • EYES: Ask the person to look at an object. Has their vision become blurred or are they seeing double?
  • FACE: Ask the person to smile. Does one side of the face droop?
  • ARMS: Ask the person to raise both arms. Does one arm drift downward?
  • SPEECH: Ask the person to repeat a simple phrase. Is their speech slurred or strange?
  • TIME: If you observe any of these signs, call 9-1-1 immediately.

Additional warning signs include:

  • Numbness or weakness of the face, arm or leg — especially on one side of the body
  • Confusion, trouble speaking or understanding
  • Trouble seeing in one or both eyes
  • Trouble walking, dizziness, loss of balance or coordination
  • Severe headache with no known cause

A stroke is always an emergency! If you have these symptoms or see someone else experiencing them, call 911 immediately!

Risk Factors

Factors you can’t change:

  • Age
  • Heredity
  • Gender
  • Previous history of stroke or heart attack

Factors you can change or control:

  • High blood pressure
  • Heart disease
  • Atrial fibrillation
  • Sickle cell anemia
  • Diabetes
  • High cholesterol
  • Smoking
  • Excessive alchohol use
  • Poor diet
  • Overweight
  • Physical inactivity
  • Drug abuse, especially stimulants
  • Oral contraceptives


The Rehabilitation Institute at NGMC offers both inpatient and outpatient rehabilitation care to help stroke patients achieve their maximum levels of independence by providing a full range of services including physical, occupational and speech therapy.

The 25-bed CARF-accredited inpatient unit holds a Stroke Specialty Certification from CARF and offers patients intense therapy — up to three hours every day — along with specialized nursing care, all coordinated by a team of therapists and clinicians.

ReGain is The Rehab Institute’s specialized outpatient program for patients with neurological disorders and other acute medical conditions. Patients participate in therapies from one to three hours each day, depending on their needs. Typical programs are three to five days a week and last six to eight weeks.

Please call 770-219-8200 for more information about our Rehabilitation Institute at NGMC.