This morning, Fox News reported on a 4th grader in St. Louis, Missouri who was able to take what she had learned about strokes for a science project and apply her knowledge to reality when her grandfather had a stroke in her presence. After dropping a bag of produce on the floor, the 4th grader’s grandfather became unresponsive and developed a droop on one side of his face. The young girl astonishingly recognized these signs as stroke and knew that she had to get help fast. She ran to her mother who immediately called 911, saving her grandfather’s life and ensuring he recovers to the fullest extent possible.
Those who have personally experienced a stroke or have a loved one who has suffered from a stroke in the past know that early detection of stroke warning signs is important, as time equals brain. In other words, the more time that passes after the onset of a stroke without treatment, the more brain tissue is inevitably lost. The amount of brain tissue that dies during a stroke directly correlates with a person’s ability to function and recover after a stroke. Unfortunately, longer delays in treatment for stroke will severely limit a patient’s prognosis. Death will occur in scenarios where a brain bleed is either undiagnosed or treatment is delayed too long to stop the bleeding. With this in mind, it is crucial to memorize the potentially brain- and life-saving strategies to recognize the most common signs and symptoms of stroke.
Organizations such as the National Stroke Association use the acronym FAST to teach people how to recognize a stroke. FAST stands for Face, Arms, Speech, and Time. These words are designed to alert people to the potential warning signs of stroke, which include one-sided facial drooping (‘face’), raising the arms and one drooping downward (‘arms’), and slurred or strange-sounding sentences (‘speech’). Finally, ‘time’ stands as a reminder to call 9-1-1 immediately, as time is of the essence.
In rare but tragic cases, patients arrive to the hospital with stroke-like symptoms but for some reason, they are overlooked or attributed to some other problem. Sometimes, a stroke is clearly suspected but a confirming scan takes too long for a hospital to arrange. In scenarios like these where a person experiences stroke misdiagnosis or a delay in stroke treatment and they are significantly worse off in their ability to recover as a consequence, compensation may be achieved for the patient and his or her family.
NJ medical malpractice attorneys Weiss & Paarz have decades of experience obtaining millions in recoveries for clients that have been unfortunate victims of medical malpractice when they or their loved ones experienced stroke misdiagnosis or a delay in stroke treatment firsthand. To read more about stroke misdiagnosis, visit our stroke misdiagnosis page or our stroke FAQ page. To get more information on strokes and how they occur, visit the National Stroke Association at Stroke.org.