Stroke Care: Why Time Matters––Medical Center of Plano

Stroke Care: Why Time Matters

Courtesy Medical Center of Plano, Collin County LIVING WELL Magazine

In the case of some ailments or medical conditions, it’s often advised to take a wait-and-see approach. However, in the case of stroke, also known as a brain attack, time is truly of the essence. Here’s why:

  • A stroke causes a disruption in the blood flow to the brain, which, in turn, causes brain cells to die. The longer it takes to receive medical treatment, the greater the chance of permanent disability or death.
  • The American Stroke Association reports that stroke is the most common cause of adult disability and the third most common cause of death in the United States.
  • There are different types of strokes. If the cause of a stroke is a blood clot, clot-busting medication can help prevent long-term disability if it is given within three hours of the first signs of stroke.
  • Recent advances in medical technology have resulted in clot retrieval devices, which, when employed in a timely manner, can be used to reopen blocked arteries, restore blood flow and help limit stroke damage.

Stroke symptoms often appear suddenly, and can vary from person to person. The American Stroke Association advises using the word “FAST” to help recognize stroke-warning signs and symptoms:

  • F = Face: When trying to smile, does one side of the face droop?
  • A = Arms: Can the victim lift both arms, or does one drop down?
  • S = Speech: Can the victim speak normally, or is speech slurred?
  • T = Time: Time is critical, so call 911 and get the person to the hospital immediately.

The Medical Center of Plano (TMCP) is the first hospital in Collin, Dallas, and Denton counties to be awarded the “Certified Comprehensive Stroke Center” designation, which recognizes it as the most advanced stroke treatment center in the region. As a regional hub in the Texas Stroke Institute’s network of recognized hospitals for stroke care, TMCP receives patients from all over North Texas and even surrounding states when complex stroke cases require a higher level of technology or interventional therapies such as cutting-edge clot removal procedure. The good news is that fast action can significantly reduce or even eliminate damage to the brain following a stroke attack.

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