Learn More Stroke Warning Signs and Symptoms

stroke warning signs

Beyond F.A.S.T. – Other Symptoms You Should Know

  • Sudden NUMBNESS or weakness of face, arm, or leg, especially on one side of the body
  • Sudden CONFUSION, trouble speaking or understanding speech
  • 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 someone shows any of these symptoms, immediately call 9-1-1 or emergency medical services.

F.A.S.T. is an easy way to remember the sudden signs and symptoms of stroke. Learn more about F.A.S.T.

Warning Signs in Posterior Circulation Strokes

Posterior circulations strokes (a stroke that occurs in the back part of the brain) occurs when a blood vessel in the back part of the brain is blocked causing the death of brain cells (called an infarction) in the area of the blocked blood vessel. This type of stroke can also be caused by a ruptured blood vessel in the back part of the brain. When this type of stroke happens several symptoms occur and they can be very different than the symptoms that occur in the blood circulation to the front part of the brain (called anterior circulation strokes).

Symptoms include:

  • Vertigo, like the room, is spinning.
  • Imbalance
  • One-sided arm or leg weakness.
  • Slurred speech or dysarthria
  • Double vision or other vision problems
  • A headache
  • Nausea and or vomiting

2017 Fast Parody Video

When it comes to spotting stroke and getting help, the faster, the better. That's because prompt treatment may make the difference between life and death — or the difference between a full recovery and long-term disability. If you already know how to spot a stroke F.A.S.T., World Stroke Day is your chance to teach others.

Share and learn from the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association latest music video that takes a lighthearted approach to teaching the most common warning symptoms of stroke. In the video, The Village People's iconic 1970's hit "Y.M.C.A." refreshes its lyrics to“F.A.S.T.,” a memory aid that stands for face drooping, arm weakness, speech difficulty, and time to call 911.


I Will Act F.A.S.T!

Knowing the warning signs of a stroke may be the difference between recovery and disability. This American Stroke Month, learn to think and act F.A.S.T.