No, not the Dragonboat kind, I meant medically.
Got an email today my sister forwarded on - one of these we often see that claim "a friend told me this, pass on to 10 friends and save a life". In this case, makes sense to me, so here's the info.
Apparently there's now medication that can reverse or at least reduce the damage of a stroke -if given within three hours. The key is recognizing a possible stroke -and calling 911. The cues they use are STR:
If they fail any one test, call 911.
I did a Google check -apparantly the American Stroke Association does not endorse this - likely because it was based on only a small study. They don't dispute it either - just are neutral. They instead list a set of warning signs:
- Sudden numbness or weakness of the 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
Seems like more to remember - I'd say stick with "STR " (smile, talk,raise)
The letter goes on to add a fourth test - to stick out the tongue and see if it is crooked. A Snopes article on this suggests it's a redundant test to the smile one, and that it is harder to decide when a tongue is crooked or not. The article also discusses another email letter that suggests managing a stroke with bloodletting! I'll quote (my comments in italics):
- When stroke strikes, the capillaries in the brain will gradually burst. When a stroke occurs, stay calm. No matter where the victim is, do not move him/her, because, if moved, the capillaries will burst. I have an image here of a Monty Python sketch with exploding heads.
- Help the victim to sit up where he is to prevent him from falling over again, and then the bloodletting can begin. ...Place the needle/pin over fire to sterilize it ... then use it to prick the tip of all 10 fingers. ... Prick till blood comes out. If blood does not start to drip, then squeeze with your fingers. When all 10 digits are bleeding, wait a few minutes, then the victim will regain consciousness. And slap you across the head and ask what the heck are you doing?
- If the victim's mouth is crooked, then pull on his ears until they are red. Then prick each ear lobe twice until two drops of blood comes from each ear lobe. Honest - that's what is says to do!
- Wait till the victim regains his/her normal state without any abnormal symptoms then take him to the hospital, otherwise, if he/she was taken in the ambulance in a hurry to the hospital, the bumpy trip can cause capillaries in his/her brain to burst. Oh yes, wouldn't want to rush to emergency before you're done with all the bloodletting.
- I learned about letting blood to save life from Chinese traditional doctor Ha Bu-Ting who lives in Sun-Juke. Well, if he learned it from a doctor then it must be true.
The text of the email that was sent to me is below.
My nurse friend sent this and encouraged me to post it and spread the word. I agree.
If everyone can remember something this simple, we could save some folks. Seriously..
During a BBQ, a friend stumbled and took a little fall - she assured everyone that she was fine (they offered to call paramedics) .....she said she had just tripped over a brick because of her new shoes. They got her cleaned up and got her a new plate of food. While she appeared a bit shaken up, Ingrid went about enjoying herself the rest of the evening Ingrid's husband called later telling everyone that his wife had been taken to the hospital - (at 6:00 pm Ingrid passed away.) She had suffered a stroke at the BBQ. Had they known how to identify the signs of a stroke, perhaps Ingrid would be with us today. Some don't die.... they end up in a helpless, hopeless condition instead.
It only takes a minute to read this...
A neurologist says that if he can get to a stroke victim within 3 hours he can totally reverse the effects of a stroke..totally. He said the trick was getting a stroke recognized, diagnosed, and then getting the patient medically cared for within 3 hours, which is tough.
RECOGNIZING A STROKE
Thank God for the sense to remember the '3' steps, STR . Read and Learn!
Sometimes symptoms of a stroke are difficult to identify. Unfortunately, the lack of awareness spells disaster. The stroke victim may suffer severe brain damage when people nearby fail to recognize the symptoms of a stroke . Now doctors say a bystander can recognize a stroke by asking three simple questions:
S *Ask the individual to SMILE.
T *Ask the person to TALK and SPEAK A SIMPLE SENTENCE (Coherently) (i.e. It is sunny out today)
R *Ask him or her to RAISE BOTH ARMS.
If he or she has trouble with ANY ONE of these tasks, call 911 immediately and describe the symptoms to the dispatcher.
New Sign of a Stroke -------- Stick out Your Tongue
NOTE: Another 'sign' of a stroke is this: Ask the person to 'stick' out his tongue.. If the tongue is 'crooked', if it goes to one side or the other, that is also an indication of a stroke.
A cardiologist says if everyone who gets this e-mail sends it to 10 people; you can bet that at least one life will be saved.