MISSOURI  World Stroke Day is October 29. The World Stroke Organization says a stroke can happen to anyone, at any time. Worldwide,  strokes are the leading cause of disability and the second leading cause of death, but almost all strokes can be prevented.

Dr. Tim Reid who is the stroke program director at Carroll County Memorial Hospital said someone can seriously reduce their risk factor of having a stroke.


In the United States, strokes are the fifth leading cause of death. That’s according to the Center for Disease Control (CDC). Those who do not die can have long term disabilities from the stroke. Worldwide, almost 14 million people will have a stroke this year and around 5.5 million people will die from it.

Strokes are often called brain attacks and happen when something blocks blood supply to part of the brain or when a blood vessel in the brain bursts.  The CDC says around 800,00 people in America have a stroke every year. The best ways to prevent having a stroke is not to smoke, keep your cholesterol level down by healthy diets, and exercise.

Dr. Reid explained strokes are fatal and often times cause serious disabilities.


The acronym F.A.S.T.  Dr. Reid said is an easy way to think about stroke early detection.

F = Face drooping: Ask the person to smile. Does one side droop?

A = Arm weakness: Ask the person to raise both arms. Does one arm drift downward?

S = Speech difficulty: Ask the person to repeat a simple sentence. Are the words slurred?

T = Time to call 9-1-1: If the person shows any of these signs, call 9-1-1 immediately. Stroke treatment can begin in the ambulance.

Strokes are the fourth leading cause of death in Missouri according to the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services.  Ischemic strokes account for over 80 percent of all strokes and are typically caused by a blood clot that blocks a blood vessel to the brain. Hemorrhagic strokes account for the remaining strokes and are typically caused by a blood vessel in the brain that breaks or ruptures spilling blood into the brain.

For more information about strokes, you can contact the Center for Disease Control or The World Stroke Organization.