The 5 ‘Suddens’: Look for these signs of stroke — and then act fast

Stroke is a common and serious disease. Each year in the United States, almost 800,000 people suffer from a new or recurrent stroke and about 130,000 die from its effects. Strokes are the leading cause of disability in this country, yet fewer than one out of four people know the symptoms.

Being aware of the symptoms of stroke is important for you and your family, friends, neighbors, co-workers, and anyone else you know, experts say, since strokes can happen to anyone, at any age.

Look for any of these signs of a possible stroke:

  • Sudden numbness or weakness of the face, arm, or leg on one side of the body
  • Sudden confusion—difficulty talking or understanding
  • Sudden loss of vision in one or both eyes
  • Sudden trouble with walking, balance, and coordination
  • Sudden and severe headache for no known reason

If you suspect you’re having a stroke or if you notice the symptoms in somebody else, call 911 immediately because with a stroke, time is of the essence. Every time a stroke strikes, the clock is ticking, and the loss is almost 2 million brain cells per minute.

UT Southwestern’s Robert D. Rogers Advanced Comprehensive Stroke Center is the first and only Advanced Comprehensive Stroke Center in North Texas certified by The Joint Commission and the American Stroke Association.

UTSW’s highly trained stroke care teams have ready access to technology and medications that can limit damage during or after a stroke.

For more information about stroke, visit To schedule an appointment with a UT Southwestern stroke specialist, call 214-645-8300. If you or someone you know is having stroke symptoms, call 911.

Comprehensive Stroke Center