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Chris Nace
Chris Nace
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A Quick and Dirty Stroke Diagnosis

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Let’s get started with a father’s day quote: "Any man can be a father. It takes someone special to be a dad." That’s probably been said by a lot of people in a lot of different ways.

So on the day where we are celebrating our dads, I thought I would direct you to a short article on WebMD that talks about a simple three step test that you can use to diagnose stroke:

1. Bystander told the patients, "Show me your teeth." The "smile test" is used to check for one-sided facial weakness — a classic sign of stroke.

2. Then the patients were told to close their eyes and raise their arms. Stroke patients usually cannot raise both arms to the same height, a sign of arm weakness.

3. Finally, the patients were asked to repeat a simple sentence to check for slurring of speech, which is another classic sign of stroke. "In Cincinnati, the researchers asked patients to say, ‘The sky is blue in Cincinnati,’" says Brice. But in the study, the researchers varied four simple phrases such as "Don’t cry over spilled milk."

Making a quick diagnosis of stroke can make a world of difference in offsetting the worst residual damage:

"This is all about time," says Edgar J. Kenton III, professor of clinical neurology at Thomas Jefferson University in Wynnewood, Pa. Kenton, who wasn’t involved in the study, says that clot-busting drugs used to treat most strokes can only be given within the first three hours after a stroke. Thus, he and other stroke specialists constantly seek ways to speed treatment.

So on Father’s Day, let’s keep this little test in mind so that we can live to resemble another great Father’s Day quote: "A man knows when he is growing old because he begins to look like his father."

Here’s to all our dad’s–mine in particular–and to hoping we all grow old enough to look like our dads.

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  1. Mike Bryant says:
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    Excellent information that may save some lives. Happy Fathers day.