Martha Jefferson Healthwise: Stroke Awareness

Oct. 9, 2013

Healthcare providers are teaming up with the Fluvanna Rotary Club to raise stroke awareness. In this week's Martha Jefferson Healthwise report, CBS19's Stephanie Satchell is previewing an upcoming clinic that will teach people about prevention, treatment and common symptoms of stroke.

The Rotary Club of Fluvanna County will be joining forces with Martha Jefferson Hospital. Charles Hoffman along with his fellow Rotary members will be putting on a stroke clinic in Fluvanna County.

A stroke is simply a blockage in the blood vessel that reduces blood flow to the brain.

"We're having it to service our citizens of Fluvanna County to provide them with an opportunity to learn about their health needs with regards to strokes and stroke prevention, treatments and stroke rehabilitation and recovery.

Martha Jefferson's Neuro Services Program Coordinator Christi Hankle says a stroke comes on quickly and can happen at any age so it's important to know exactly what to do.

"It's really important to get attention because a lot of people still don't recognize that strokes are treatable, but the only way that strokes can be treatable is if you come to the hospital fast by calling 911," said Christi Hankle, Neuro Services Program Coordinator, Martha Jefferson Hospital.

There's only a brief window of time to get the medication known as "TPA" into a patient's system. "TPA" stands for Tissue Plasminogen Activator and it's a drug that reverses a stroke.

While at the clinic, people will learn more about the TPA treatment, exactly what happens to the body when one is having a stroke and what to expect at the hospital.

"We're going to have some great presenters of overall information about strokes with Christi and a fellow from Fluvanna County Fire and Rescue. He'll be talking about 911 on through to having the patient arrive at the hospital," said Hoffman.

Attendees will also learn more about the common symptoms of stroke.

"They can include weakness, numbness and tingling and that can be recognized in the face, the arm or the leg or all the or combination. You can have sudden onset of difficulty speaking or change in your vision. You can have sudden problems walking or you can even have sudden headache...the worst headache of your life that just abruptly comes on," said Hankle.

The hope is that with this information, people will have a better idea about how to care for themselves or loved ones if they have a stroke.

The stroke clinic will take place on Saturday October 19, 2013 from 9:00am to 11:00am at St. Peter & Paul Catholic Church. The address is 4309 Thomas Jefferson Pkwy., Palmyra, VA 22963.
Anyone is welcome to attend and no registration is required. Nurses will also be available to answer health questions and check glucose levels and blood pressure.

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