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Stroke Program

Bristol Hospital has been a Primary Stroke Center since the accreditation was first offered by the CT Department of Public Health in 2008. Bristol Hospital is committed to providing the best care and we strive to meet national standards for best practice in the care of stroke patients. Our staff is specially trained in giving appropriate and timely care. Stroke is a devastating disease and one that can often be prevented. Through lifestyle changes and working with your physician, you can reduce your risk of having a stroke. 
Stroke is an emergency.  If you recognize the signs and symptoms of a stroke, get to the hospital fast.  Please read the information provided, access the links and talk to your doctor for more information. 
What Is a Stroke?

A stroke occurs when blood flow to the brain is interrupted by a blocked or broken blood vessel.  When blood stops flowing to certain parts of the brain, patients may have symptoms such as weakness, speech and/or visual problems.  There are two types of stroke.
1. Ischemic Stroke is a blood clot stopping the flow of blood to an area of the brain.  
2. Hemorrhagic Stroke is when a weakened/diseased blood vessel’s rupture leaks blood into brain tissue.
You can improve your health, even if you’ve had a stroke.  A healthy lifestyle plays a large part in decreasing disability and death from stroke and heart attack.  Here are steps to take:
  • Don’t smoke.
  • Improve your eating habits.
  • Be physically active.
  • Take your medicine as directed.
  • Get your blood pressure checked and control it if it’s high.
  • Reach and maintain a healthy weight.
  • Decrease your stress level.
  • Seek emotional support when it’s needed.
  • Have regular medical checkups.
Warning Signs of Stroke
  • Sudden numbness or weakness of 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
What to do it you are having symptoms
  • CALL 911
  • Not all the warning signs occur in every stroke.  Don’t ignore signs of stroke, even if they go away!
  • Check the time.  When did the first warning sign or symptom start?  You or the person who is with you will be asked this important question later.
  • Treatment needs to occur as soon as possible.  A clot-busting drug or other treatments may reduce long-term disability for patients with ischemic stroke, the most common stroke type.
  • If you have one or more stroke symptoms, don’t delay!  Immediately call 9-1-1.  Do not drive yourself to the nearest hospital!
  • Expect the person experiencing symptoms to resist going to the hospital.  Don’t take “no” for an answer because “Time Lost is Brain Lost.”
  • When communicating with Emergency Medical Services (EMS) or the hospital, make sure you use the word “STROKE.”

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