Stroke Signs and Symptoms
If you notice any signs or symptoms of a stroke, call 9-1-1 immediately. The chance that you will survive and recover from a stroke is higher if you get emergency treatment right away.1
What to Look For
Stroke can affect your senses, speech, behavior, thoughts, memory, and emotions. One side of your body may become paralyzed or weak.
The five most common signs and symptoms of stroke are
- Sudden numbness or weakness of the face, arm, or leg.
- Sudden confusion or trouble speaking or understanding others.
- Sudden trouble seeing in one or both eyes.
- Sudden dizziness, trouble walking, or loss of balance or coordination.
- Sudden severe headache with no known cause.
Signs of a stroke always come on suddenly. If your symptoms go away after a few minutes, you may have had a "mini-stroke," also called a transient ischemic attack (TIA). TIAs do not cause permanent damage but can be a warning sign of a full stroke—you should still get help immediately.
If you or someone else experiences one or more signs or symptoms of stroke, call 9-1-1 immediately. Every minute counts!
- Lloyd-Jones D, Adams R, Carnethon M, et al. Heart disease and stroke statistics—2009 update. A report from the American Heart Association Statistics Committee and Stroke Statistics Subcommittee. Circulation 2009;119:e21-e181.