What are the main symptoms of strokes?

CVA - Cerebrovascular accident, Cerebrovascular accident (disorder), Stroke,cerebrovascular disorder, stroke, CVA (cerebral vascular accident), cerebrovascular accident,

Main symptoms

At the onset of a stroke, a few main symptoms should be notices, which are easy to remember by using the acronym F.A.S.T.

  1. FACE - The patient’s face seems to have become pulled to one side, the patient cannot smile, their mouth or eye becomes distorted.
  2. ARMS - Patients undergoing a stroke cannot lift their arms, cannot hold them over their heads due to weakness that may be felt in both arms or only in one arm.
  3. SPEECH - The patient has difficulties in speaking, cannot articulate properly, they elongate words, their speech is unintelligible, they are confused.
  4. TIME- If you are experiencing these symptoms, you must ask for immediate specialized medical help at the nearest hospital.
    It is very important to minimize the time it takes to transport the patient to the hospital; often this parameter determines the prognosis of the condition.
    The faster the patient can receive first aid, the more chances they have to survive the stroke or minimize the consequences.

Other symptoms

Other symptoms that may occur are:

  1. The patient may experience paralysis of one hand or leg (hemiplegia)
  2. Loss or darkening of vision
  3. Confusion
  4. Speech difficulties or difficulties in understanding what others are saying to them
  5. Problems with maintaining equilibrium and coordination
  6. Difficulties swallowing
  7. Severe headache that has not been experienced before
  8. Loss of memory

Not all of these symptoms appear in patients who are experiencing a stroke. Some may apply and some may not.

Other causes may be the reason for these symptoms.

Medically Reviewed by a doctor on 12 Jan 2018
Medical Author: Dr. med. Diana Hysi