In recognition of World Stroke Day on Oct. 29, the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association are offering a free mobile app to help people detect a stroke.
Using the “Spot a Stroke F.A.S.T.” app, smartphone users can call 9-1-1 directly, locate award-winning hospitals and view a stroke warning signs video.
Teaching people how to recognize a stroke and respond quickly is a major goal of the association’s “Together to End Stroke” initiative, sponsored by global healthcare products company Covidien. The campaign is designed to raise stroke awareness and educate Americans that stroke is largely preventable, treatable and beatable.
“Even if you don’t think you’re at risk for a stroke, it’s important for everyone to know stroke warning signs and what to do in a stroke emergency,” said Allyson France, senior director of the Northwest Ohio Division of the American Heart Association. “When someone recognizes a stroke and acts fast by calling 9-1-1, the person has a greater chance of getting to an appropriate hospital quickly and being assessed for a clot-busting drug or other medical devices that may save their life and improve their chances for recovery.”
F.A.S.T. stands for:
F - Face drooping: Does one side of the face droop or is it numb? Ask the person to smile.
A - Arm weakness: Is one side of the body weak or numb? Ask the person to raise both arms. Does one arm drift downward?
S - Speech difficulty: Is speech slurred? Are they unable to speak, or are they hard to understand? Ask the person to repeat a simple sentence like, “The sky is blue.” Is the sentence repeated correctly?
T - Time to call 9-1-1: If the person shows any of these symptoms, even if the symptoms go away, call 9-1-1 and get them to the hospital immediately.
The “Spot a Stroke F.A.S.T.” mobile app is available by searching for “American Stroke Association” at iTunes and Google Play online stores. For a direct link, visit StrokeAssociation.org/WarningSigns.