How do I know if I'm having a stroke?
If you have any of the following symptoms, call for emergency help immediately. The sooner you get help, the more doctors can do to prevent further or permanent damage.
- Sudden weakness or numbness of the face, arm or leg on one side of the body
- Sudden dimness or loss of vision, particularly in one eye
- Loss of speech, trouble talking or understanding what others are saying
- Sudden severe headache with no known cause
- Unexplained dizziness, unstable walking or falling, especially along with any of the other symptoms
Another warning sign of a stroke is called a transient ischemic attack (TIA). A TIA is a "mini-stroke" that can cause the symptoms listed above and may only last a few minutes, but should not be ignored. People who have a TIA are at greater risk of having a stroke later. Call your doctor immediately if you think you are having a TIA.
Written by familydoctor.org editorial staff