Did you know that stroke affects 1 in 5 women? This is a high risk for women and many of us are aware that stroke compromises body and speech function that may or may not return to prior functioning. For some people, stroke may mean losing their life. In the United States, stroke is the third-leading cause of death for women and for men it is the fifth-leading cause of death.
A neurologist of ClevelandClinic, Dr. Andrew Russman states, “I think it’s very important that we have a set of guidelines that raises awareness among women, especially women who don’t traditionally think of themselves at risk for stroke.” New research has been able to identify specific symptoms and risk factors of stroke for women.
Unique symptoms in women of which all are marked by suddenness include hiccups, nausea, general weakness, shortness of breath, heart palpitations and pain in the face, chest, or limbs.
Risk factors in women include pregnancy with high blood pressure, use of birth control pills withhigh blood pressure, hormone replacement therapy, migraines with aura and atrial fibrillation. It is important to note that smoking coupled with use of birth control pill and/or migraines with aura causes the risk of stroke to increase even more. Additionally, atrial fibrillation in women over 75 years old will quadruple their risk for a stroke.
It is important to talk with your doctor about any of these factors that may be present in your life. In the case of an emergency, it is important to know stroke symptoms so that someone treated within three hours for optimal effectiveness of treatment. Treating stroke after three hours of the first onset of symptoms is still possible but the difficulty of recovery increases. This is why it is important to act F.A.S.T.
General Symptoms for Women and Men
F-Is there facial droop on one side of the face?
A-Can person liftbotharms, and does one drift downward?
S-What is their speech like? Are their words slurred?
T-Is it time to call 911? If any of these symptoms are present, yes call 911!
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Sources:CBSNews, StrokeAssociation.org, Stroke.org