Stroke is the fifth leading cause of death and a major cause of disability in adults in the U.S. Stroke takes the lives of approximately 130,000 Americans each year and on average, one American dies from stroke every four minutes. These are startling statistics, but by acting FAST, at the first sign of stroke, you can greatly increase your chance of survival.

A stroke occurs when a portion of the brain is deprived of oxygen or blood. That piece of the brain either dies or significantly malfunctions as a result. When it comes to stroke, every minute counts. The sooner you get treated, the better your chance of survival and recovery.

If someone is having a stroke, think and act F-A-S-T:

F-Face: Watch for facial drooping. Ask the person to smile and see if one side of the face droops.

A-Arms: Is their arm weak? Ask them to raise both arms. Does one arm drift downward?

S-Speech: Look out for slurred speech. Ask them to repeat a simple phrase, such as: "The sky is blue." Can he or she do it?

T-Time: If you notice any of these symptoms, call 9-1-1 immediately. Even if the symptoms go away, still call for help.

Coliseum Medical Centers was recently given an Award for Excellence by the Georgia Coverdell Acute Stroke Registry (GCASR) at the 2019 Georgia Stroke Conference. The award was presented for having the highest proportion of eligible patients with a door-to-needle time less than 45 minutes among hospitals with similar bed size (301-499 beds). Door-to-needle times represent the time it takes for a stroke patient to receive the clot busting drug, tPA after arrival to the hospital. The American Stroke Association recommends a door to needle time of 60 minutes or less. Coliseum Northside Hospital also received an Award for Excellence for having shown the highest proportion of patients with a door-to-imaging time less than twenty-five minutes. Door-to-imaging time is the time it takes for a patient to receive a CT scan. Coliseum Medical Centers and Coliseum Northside Hospital were the only two middle Georgia hospitals who received awards at the conference.

In addition, Coliseum Medical Centers and Coliseum Northside Hospital have been named a Primary Stroke Center by The Joint Commission. Coliseum Medical Centers has also received the American Stroke Association's Get With The Guidelines(R)-Stroke Gold Quality Achievement Award for the last nine years.

Sourabh Lahoti, MD, Neurologist at Coliseum Medical Centers, said, "Coliseum Medical Centers and Coliseum Northside Hospital continue to strive for excellence in the acute treatment of stroke patients. Our stroke team is dedicated to care that is timely and effective in order to save lives and improve outcomes. I am incredibly proud of our team for doing the work that is needed to receive an importance designation such as this."

To find events related to stroke prevention, treatment and recovery, go to our Classes & Events page and search for Stroke!