According to the American Stroke Association, every 40 seconds, someone in the United States has a stroke, making this disease the nation's fourth leading cause of death. Stroke is also the leading cause of serious disability.

What is a stroke?

A stroke occurs when a part of the brain's blood supply is suddenly interrupted by a clot or when a blood vessel bursts. When blood flow is blocked, brain cells die because oxygen and nutrients cannot get through.

Know F.A.S.T.

F = Face drooping

Does one side of the face droop or is it numb? Ask the person to smile. Is the person's smile uneven or lopsided?

A = Arm weakness

Is one arm weak or numb? Ask the person to raise both arms. Does one arm drift downward?

S = Speech

Is speech slurred? Is the person unable to speak or hard to understand? Ask the person to repeat a simple sentence.

T = Time to call 9-1-1

If the person shows any of these symptoms, even if the symptoms go away, call 9-1-1 and get them to the hospital immediately.

Joint Commission Seal

Signs and symptoms of a stroke

  • Sudden numbness or weakness of the face, arm, or leg, especially on one side of the body.
  • Sudden confusion, trouble talking, or understanding speech.
  • Sudden trouble seeing in one or both eyes.
  • Sudden trouble walking, dizziness, or loss of balance or coordination.
  • Sudden severe headache with no known cause.

Primary Stroke Center

Stroke treatment

If you experience any of the above symptoms, call 911 immediately. There is a medication available to break up the clot, but it is only effective if taken within 3 hours from the start of your symptoms.

Advanced certified Primary Stroke Center

Get With the Guidelines Award

Largo Medical Center's 14th Steet SW Campus is an Advance Certified Primary Stroke Center. It has been certified by the Joint Commission. This certification means that our program complies with the highest national standards for safety and quality care in the rapid response and treatment of acute stroke patients.

Services offered

  • Trained stroke team available around the clock
  • Rapid turn around of radiology and lab procedures
  • Multidisciplinary Stroke Committee that reviews patient care and outcomes monthly


To learn more about the signs and symptoms of a stroke, please call (888) 741-5115.