Stroke Warning Signs


During a stroke, fast action is key. Getting help quickly can be the difference between life and death. Fortunately, there are many warning signs that show you a stroke is happening. So get help immediately if you notice any of the following symptoms.

Weakness, numbness and speech issues

Watch for sudden numbness or weakness of the face, arm or leg. Often, this only happens on one side of the body. A stroke can also cause speech difficulty. A person who is having a stroke may slur words. They may not be able to speak at all.

Confusion, vision and coordination

A stroke can cause sudden confusion, and trouble understanding things. The person may suddenly have trouble seeing. They may have double vision. This can affect one or both eyes. A stroke can cause a sudden, severe headache. It can cause problems with balance and coordination. The person may feel dizzy, and may have trouble walking. They may have drowsiness, nausea and vomiting.


Sometimes stroke symptoms last only a few moments and then disappear. We call that a "mini-stroke." But just because the symptoms go away, that doesn't mean everything is OK. It's still a sign of a serious problem. So if you or someone else experiences any of these signs, get help immediately. Call for emergency medical help. Say, "I think this is a stroke." Do not delay. By acting quickly, you can help prevent severe disability. You may save a life.