Stroke Awareness Can Save Lives

More than 800,000 strokes happen each year in the United States. Stroke is the fifth leading cause of death in the U.S. and is a major cause of serious disability for adults. Learn about the signs of stroke and what you can do to help prevent stroke.

A stroke is caused by blocked blood flow to the brain and can affect a person’s speech, movement, memory, and more. It’s important to know the signs of a stroke and get help quickly. Warning signs of stroke include weakness in the face arm or leg, difficulty speaking, vision loss, dizziness and brief loss of consciousness.

If you think you or a loved one is having a stroke, call 911 immediately and note the time when the first symptoms appeared.

Fortunately, Rooks County Health Center (RCH) has the skilled personnel and resources necessary to save lives and mitigate the long-term harm that can result from stroke. A state of the art CT scanner is on site to detect the location of blood clots. A “stroke robot”, which connects RCH providers with neurologists in Denver who can consult and advise on treatment options, is another important component in saving numerous lives of area stroke victims.

The Rehabilitation Department at RCH is staffed with highly trained, compassionate therapists who have the expertise and tools to restore stroke patients’ physical abilities as much as possible. Using equipment to restore balance and walking capabilities helps patients regain the ability to perform normal daily functions. The new zero-entry aquatic therapy pool plays a major role in many instances.

The Rooks County Ambulance Service and Rooks County Regional Airport play key roles in the rapid transport of patients to RCH and, if necessary, on to specialized treatment facilities such as KU Medical Center.

Anyone can have a stroke at any age, but almost three-quarters of all strokes happen in people over 65. Certain factors can increase your chances of having a stroke, such as smoking and drinking, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes, and bad eating habits. Up to 80% of strokes may be prevented by living a healthy lifestyle

Talk to your doctor about ways you can take small steps now to improve your health.

Angela Hahn, a registered nurse at RCH who works in the new Rehabilitation Center summed up her advice by saying “Living with the effects of stroke is a struggle for many families in our community.  Recognizing the symptoms and reporting them to your physician, or getting to the ER as soon as possible, is your best bet to not only survive a stroke but to minimize the long term effects it could have on you.  Know the signs, and don’t be afraid to seek help as soon as you think there may be something wrong.  What you may feel is a few hours of inconvenience could mean a lifetime of quality living”.


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