Largo, FL – Almost 800,000 Americans will suffer a stroke this year.* Many may not know much at all about these so-called “brain attacks.” Largo Medical Center is educating our community through a phenomenal FREE educational event called Stroke Smart 2012. It’s coming up Thursday, May 31 at 12 noon. 

“The lasting effects of a stroke can be devastating,” said Desiree Metzger, MSN, ARNP-C, Stroke Coordinator at Largo Medical Center. “Learning to beat your risk factors is one way for you to fight stroke before it strikes you.” 

This FREE educational seminar is likely to be one of the most comprehensive where attendees will learn about the different kinds of brain attacks, risk factors and how a local firefighter, when faced with a stroke, received the immediate care he needed at Largo Medical Center. His caregiver, his wife, explains how their lives have changed. 

“People must understand that time is brain,” said John Drygas, MD – Neurosurgeon at Largo Medical Center. “There are a lot of treatments we have today including surgical ones as well as medications that can make a difference in the quality of the lives of many of you, your friends and family.” 

You can meet Gary Costa, a stroke survivor with AN AMAZING STORY, his wife Virginia, Dr. Drygas and Ms. Metzger at Stroke Smart 2012 at Largo Medical Center. Seating is limited. To register, call 1-888-741-5115 or visit If you would like to do an interview about stroke, please contact Tammy Robiconti, Marketing Director, at (727) 348-1896. 

Largo Medical Center is a 425-bed teaching hospital serving the community from two campuses. Largo Medical Center provides breast healthcare at the Florida Breast Institute, knee care at the Florida Knee and Orthopedic Pavilion, back, neck and neurological care at the Florida Spine & Neuro Center, cardiovascular services, behavioral healthcare, inpatient and oupatient rehabilitation, wound care, sleep disorders care, imaging & diagnostic services and emergency care. Largo Medical Center’s Graduate Medical Education program is the West Coast Academic Center for NOVA Southeastern University, is affiliated with the USF Morsani College of Medicine and is the 3rd largest program of its kind in the Southern United States.  

*Statistic from the website of the American Stroke Association website, a division of the American Heart Association