Lourdes is a New York State Designated Stroke Center. This means
we have met the criteria for stroke center status by demonstrating
our abilities to diagnose and treat strokes. This designation
encompasses several aspects including trained doctors and nurses
able to rapidly identify and treat acute stroke and a comprehensive
approach to stroke patients on our inpatient stroke unit. Our
multi-disciplinary stroke team includes doctors, nurses,
therapists, care management, dietary and social workers.
At Lourdes, we can offer the latest technology and medications
while treating the stroke patient's entire needs. Care is
coordinated from the first point of contact with the patient,
whether through the emergency department, our outpatient service
areas or our inpatient units.
What is a Stroke?
Like a heart attack, a stroke occurs when there is a disruption
in the blood supply to the brain. This disruption can come from a
blocked blood vessel in the brain or a blood vessel that ruptures
and bleeds into the brain. Strokes can vary widely in the amount of
damage they cause. A stroke is a medical emergency and the earlier
it is treated, the better the outcome is likely to be. Remember,
"Time Lost, is Brain Lost".
Who is at risk for a Stroke?
While a stroke is possible in anybody, certain types of people
are at increased risk for a stroke.
You may be at higher risk if:
- You have hypertension (high blood pressure)
- You have high cholesterol
- You have diabetes
- You have irregular heart beats, such as atrial
- You have narrowing of the blood vessels in the neck from
- You are obese
- You smoke cigarettes
- You take certain medications that increase the body's tendency
to form blood clots.
How do I know if I'm having a Stroke?
Call 911 immediately if you experience:
- sudden loss of vision in one eye or both
- sudden loss of strength in a limb
- sudden loss of sensation over part of your body
- sudden inability to speak or to understand spoken commands
- sudden dizziness, loss of balance or lack of coordination
- sudden severe headache without a known cause
Only a doctor can diagnose a stroke. These symptoms, or warning
signs, might come from other causes, but it's important not to
delay seeking treatment if they occur, even for a short time. Call
Download FAST brochure
What should I do if I think someone else is having a
Ask them to repeat a sentence back to you, to smile at you, and
to raise both arms. If they have problems with any of these three
steps, call 911. Stay with the person and note the time that the
person began to have symptoms. The Emergency Room physician will
need this information.
What is a "mini-stroke?" What is a TIA?
If someone experiences stroke symptoms that go completely away
in a short period of time (typically less than an hour), we call
that a TIA (Transient Ischemic Attack.) Sometimes, people call
these "mini-strokes." Although these episodes don't result in
ongoing deficits, they are an important indicator that there is a
problem that needs to be looked into. If you experience stroke
symptoms, don't wait to see if they'll go away, call for help
What can be done to treat a Stroke?
The earlier someone gets to a hospital with a stroke, the more
options there are for treatment. There are medications that can be
given to thin the blood to prevent clots, medications that protect
the brain tissue around the stroke, or even medications to dissolve
blockages and restore blood flow to the affected part of the
Physicians, nurses, and rehabilitation therapists help the
patient recover from the damage done by a stroke. And, physicians
will investigate the cause of the stroke to reduce the likelihood
of further strokes occurring.
Where should I seek treatment for a stroke?
Time is of the essence if you're having a stroke, so the best
place is the Emergency Department of a suitable hospital. Lourdes
Hospital is fully equipped to manage all phases of Stroke care,
including aggressive therapies to limit the damage from a stroke
and full rehabilitation services to help you recover. Call 911,
explain your symptoms, ask for Lourdes, and you'll get rapid,
modern, and effective care.
What can I do to prevent a Stroke?
Work with your primary care physician to reduce the risk factors
- Maintain a healthy body weight
- Don't smoke tobacco products
- Monitor your blood pressure, blood sugar, and cholesterol and
treat these as necessary
Simple examinations and tests can determine if you have a
medical condition that could be treated to reduce the likelihood of