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May is National Stroke Awareness Month!

May is National Stroke Awareness Month! The “SPOT A STROKE FAST” campaign and the website is a joint community stroke awareness campaign by the South Carolina Hospital Association (SCHA) and the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC).

This website provides excellent information to the community in the identification of stroke, South Carolina stroke statistics, and first hand stories (videos) from stroke survivors around the State.

Stroke Data in South Carolina:

Did you know? Stroke is South Carolina's 3rd biggest killer.

In 2015, more than 2,600 people have died from a stroke in South Carolina.

According to the CDC, South Carolina had the 7th highest mortality rate in the nation that year.

20,532 people were treated for stroke in South Carolina in 2015. Of those, there were 5,520 emergency department visits and 15,012 hospitalization discharges.

In South Carolina, the cost of hospitalization due to stroke was $1.5 billion in 2015. It is projected to reach $2 billion by 2020.

Information About Stroke

What is a stroke? A stroke occurs when a blood vessel that carries oxygen and nutrients to the brain is either blocked by a clot or bursts.

When this happens, part of your brain cannot get the blood and oxygen it needs and starts to die. If this lasts for long, it can cause permanent damage.

The acronym FAST (Face Arm Speech Time) is an easy way to remember and identify the most common symptoms of a stroke.

Face: Does one side of the face droop or is it numb? Ask the person to smile. Is the person’s smile uneven?

Arm: Is one arm weak or numb? Ask the person to raise both arms. Does one arm drift downward?

Speech: Is speech slurred? Is the person unable to speak or hard to understand? Ask the person to repeat a simple sentence, like “The sky is blue.” Is the sentence repeated correctly?

Time: If someone shows any of these symptoms, even if the symptoms go away, CALL 9-1-1 and get the person to the hospital immediately. Check the time so you’ll know when the symptoms first appeared.

Call To Action: If you think you are having a stroke, call 9-1-1 right away - not a friend! Emergency medical services (EMS) staff can begin life-saving treatment immediately!

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