How to act FAST: Recognising the Signs of a Stroke

How to act FAST: Recognising the Signs of a Stroke

Sarah McLoughlin
Posted by Sarah McLoughlin

Date: Friday, 09 February 2018. -  
Blog, First Aid Emergencies

Every five minutes, someone suffers with a stroke in the UK. Strokes can affect anyone at any time but are more likely to occur if the victim is over 65.

A stroke is a serious medical condition that requires urgent medical attention so it is important to act FAST.

What is a stroke?

A stroke is a life-threatening medical emergency that occurs when the blood supply to part of the brain is cut off as a result of a blood clot or a burst blood vessel. A person experiencing a stroke may lose control over their movement, speech and perception. They could also lose consciousness which is why it is essential for you to act fast as they will require prompt hospital treatment.

How to act FAST


  • Can the person smile?
  • Has their eye or mouth drooped to one side?


  • Can the person raise both of their arms?


  • Can the person speak properly?
  • Do they understand what you are saying?


  • The time to call 999/112 if you suspect anyone has had a stroke is right away!

Other signs of a stroke

The FAST test can identify most strokes, but occasionally a stroke can cause other symptoms. Other signs and symptoms of a stroke may include:

  • Complete paralysis of one side of the body
  • Sudden loss or blurred vision
  • Dizziness
  • Confusion
  • Difficulty understanding what others are saying
  • Problems with balance and coordination
  • Difficulty swallowing
  • A sudden and severe headache
  • Loss of consciousness

Although, there may be other possible reasons for these symptoms and it is important to seek medical attention in order to determine the cause.

Save a Life

It is important to know and remember the FAST test when it comes to recognising the signs of a stroke. Doing so could ultimately save the life of a loved one or even someone you do not know. If you would like to know more about strokes, get in touch by tweeting us @imptraining

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