We are very proud to share with you what our patients say about Meadowlands Hospital... Read more
“Dietary staff were very nice. Nurses are very nice, helpful, caring and listen to you. Radiology staff was also very nice and took the time to explain things to you. Security guards were cool.”
— Elaine P., Meadowlands Hospital HCAHPS/3West Patient, August 2017
“Exceptional care from doctors, nurses and Radiology staff. Very pleased with my treatment at the Meadowlands Hospital.”
— Cosimo R., Meadowlands Hospital Emergency Room Patient, August 2017
“Everyone at the Meadowlands Hospital was helpful and pleasant. All nurses were attentive and willing to make me as comfortable as possible.”
— Margaret K., Meadowlands Hospital Ambulatory Services Patient, August 2017
May is National Stroke Awareness Month
During the month of May and every month of the year, please spread the word about stroke to increase awareness. While stroke is the fifth leading cause of death in the U.S., there are more than 7 million stroke survivors. To reduce their risk of stroke, individuals can take control of their health.
2017 Stroke Fact Sheet
Let's Talk About Stroke
Please take the time to review this video on recognizing the symptoms of stroke:
Stroke, a disease that affects the arteries leading to and within the brain, is the number five cause of death and a leading cause of disability in the United States. A stroke occurs when a blood vessel that carries oxygen and nutrients to the brain is either blocked by a clot or bursts (or ruptures). When that happens, part of the brain cannot get the blood (and oxygen) it needs, so it and brain cells die. Nearly two million brain cells die each minute a stroke goes untreated.
There are different types of stroke: ischemic stroke caused either by a clot obstructing the flow of blood to the brain; hemorrhagic stroke caused by a blood vessel rupturing and preventing blood flow to the brain; TIA (transient ischemic attack) or "mini stroke” caused by a temporary clot. Approximately 87% of strokes are Ischemic. While hemorrhagic stroke is less common, it’s more deadly.
Here are some facts from the National Stroke Association:
• Every 40 seconds someone experiences a stroke, every four minutes someone dies from a stroke.
• Up to 80 percent of strokes are preventable.
• Stroke kills more than twice as many American women every year as breast cancer
• Overall lifetime risk of stroke is higher in women than men because life expectancy is higher. Also, women who have already suffered a stroke are significantly more at risk for a second stroke than men after two years.
• Incidence rate of stroke in African-Americans is almost double that of Caucasians.
• Spanish-speaking Hispanics are less likely to know stroke symptoms than English-speaking Hispanics, African Americans and Caucasians.
• Up to 40 percent of all persons who experience a TIA will go on to have a full stroke within two days of a TIA; 5 percent of patients will have a stroke within 90 days of a TIA; 10 to 15 percent will have a stroke.
• Anyone of any age can have a stroke.
• Family history of stroke increases likelihood of a stroke.
The term “Brain Attack” is the most descriptive and realistic description of a stroke. Since the brain is the body’s most vital and delicate organ, a stroke should warrant the same degree of emergency care as a heart attack. Immediate response is crucial because every minute matters – from the time symptoms first become noticeable to the time treatment is received, more brain cells die. The best thing to do is to call 9-1-1 for immediate assistance.
Treatment is available and some options are most effective if administered within the first three hours after experiencing symptoms. An individual’s chances of walking out of the hospital with little to no disability are greatly improved if they receive appropriate treatments early. Unfortunately, it takes the average person in the U.S. 12 to 24 hours to get to the hospital after experiencing the first stroke symptom. This is why it’s important that everyone learns how to RECOGNIZE stroke symptoms and how to RESPOND.
The most common stroke symptoms are:
• Sudden numbness or weakness of face, arm or leg, especially on one side of the body
• Sudden confusion, trouble speaking or understanding
• Sudden trouble seeing in one or both eyes
• Sudden trouble walking, dizziness, loss of balance or coordination
• Sudden severe headache with no known cause
If an individual sees someone having these symptoms or if they are experiencing any of these symptoms themselves, call or have someone 9-1-1 immediately. Appropriate treatment can be more effective if given quickly. Every minute matters!
One way to help remember the symptoms of stroke and what to do, is to learn the Face, Arms, Speech Test, otherwise known as FAST:
• F = FACE: ask the person to smile – do both sides of the face move equally (Normal) or does one side of the face not move at all (Abnormal)?
• A = ARM: ask the person to raise both arms – do both arms move equally (Normal) or does one arm drift downward compared to the other (Abnormal)?
• S = SPEECH: ask the person to speak a simple sentence – does the person use correct words with no slurring (Normal) or do they slur their speech, use inappropriate words or is unable to speak at all (Abnormal)?
• T = TIME: to call 911 – if you observe any of these symptoms, call 911 immediately. Every minute matters!
Please take the time to review this video on recognizing the symptoms of stroke:
The National Stroke Association recommends the following stroke prevention guidelines:
• Have blood pressure checked at least annually. If it’s elevated, work with a healthcare professional to keep it under control. Having high blood pressure, or hypertension, increases stroke risk four to six times.
• Find out if an individual has atrial fibrillation – a type of irregular heartbeat. If left untreated, Afib can increase stroke risk up to five times.
• Stop smoking or don’t start. Smoking doubles stroke risk.
• If an individual chooses to drink alcohol, it should be in moderation. Recent studies have suggested that modest alcohol consumption (up to two glasses of wine or the alcohol equivalent) may reduce stroke risk. However, an individual can choose to refrain from drinking alcohol or not start.
• Have cholesterol levels checked. High cholesterol can indirectly increase stroke risk by putting people at greater risk of heart disease. An individual should talk to their health care provider if their total cholesterol is higher than 200 mg/dL or if LDL cholesterol is higher than 100 mg/dL.
• Control diabetes. A diabetic should follow doctor’s recommendation carefully to control their diabetes. Diabetes increases the risk for stroke two to four times. Diabetes can also lead to circulation problems. • Incorporate physical activity into a daily routine. Active people tend to have lower cholesterol levels. Regular exercise also seems to slow down or stop clogging of blood vessels.
• Enjoy a low-sodium (salt) and low-fat diet. Too much salt may contribute to high blood pressure and make it more difficult to control. A diet that is low in fat will likely include vegetables, lean meats such as chicken and fish, low-fat dairy products and a limited number of eggs.
• If an individual has circulation problems, which increase their risk for stroke, they should work with their healthcare professional on controlling this condition.
There’s still so much information needed on how the brain can seemingly repair itself from the functional damage caused by stroke. Some brain cells may be only temporarily damaged and may resume functioning. In some cases, the brain can “relearn” what was lost. Sometimes, a region of the brain “takes over” for a region damaged by the stroke. People who have had a stroke sometimes experience remarkable and unanticipated recoveries that can’t be explained. General recovery guidelines show:
• 10 percent of stroke survivors recover almost completely.
• 25 percent recover with minor disabilities.
• 40 percent experience moderate to severe disabilities requiring special care.
• 10 percent require care within either a skilled-care or other long-term care facility.
• 15 percent die shortly after the stroke.
For more information about American Stroke Awareness Month, visit www.strokeassociation.org
For more information about stroke or National Stroke Association, call toll-free at 1-800-STROKES (787-6537), or visit www.stroke.org. For more information on stroke through the American Stroke Association visit www.strokeassociation.org.