CINCINNATI, Ohio (Ivanhoe Newswire) - Strokes kill 130,000 Americans every year, which is 1 out of every 19 deaths. It is also the leading cause of disability. But would you recognize the signs of a stroke if it was happening to you or to a loved one?
The day started liked any other for Brad and Sara Fahrenkamp with breakfast before work with their two little boys.
But suddenly Brad got very sick.
Sara Fahrenkamp told Ivanhoe, "He said I just don't feel well, I feel kind of nauseous and flu-like. I'm just going to stay home today."
Throughout their marriage, Brad had always been healthy. By nighttime they knew something was very wrong.
Stroke patient, Brad Fahrenkamp told Ivanhoe, "My left arm and part of my face were numb and tingling. I went to stand up to dress myself and I fell right to the floor.
Sara Fahrenkamp said, "I was absolutely shocked when the physician in the ER said to us, your husband has had not just one stroke, but three strokes."
A stroke occurs when blood flow is blocked to the brain or blood leaks in the brain and damages cells. Symptoms occur in the parts of the body controlled by those cells.
Neurological Physical Therapist for the University of Cincinnati , Paige Thomas, PT-MSR told Ivanhoe, "The quicker that you can obtain emergency services and emergency care, the quicker you can receive treatment and medication that can hopefully stop the stroke or prevent it from becoming worse."
That's why experts say it's important to know the stroke warning signs. Signs include numbness or weakness in your face, arm, or leg, speech or vision problems, dizziness, severe headache and nausea.
Brad survived and is recovering well thanks to intensive therapy.
Brad Fahrenkamp told Ivanhoe, "Seek help as fast as possible. It's one thing that you won't regret."
Doctors with the American Stroke Association say that your chances of recovery are better if you can get medical treatment within about 3 hours of a stroke. While stroke can happen to anyone, smoking, diabetes, and high blood pressure are significant risk factors.