During a recent live TV broadcast, Tulsa news anchor Julie Chin started to lose her vision in one eye…her hand and arm went numb…and she was unable to read the teleprompter. Julie was experiencing the early signs of a stroke.

More than 795,000 Americans have a stroke each year, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. It is the leading cause of death and disability in the US. But if a stroke is recognized and treated promptly, the outcome often is very good. And so I wondered, Would I recognize the signs of a stroke in myself or someone else?

The Stroke Awareness Foundation (StrokeInfo.org) suggests the BE FAST acronym to help identify the early signs of a stroke…

Balance: Is the person having a hard time staying balanced or coordinated?

Eyes: Is he/she experiencing blurry or double vision or loss of vision in one or both eyes?

Face: Is one side of his face drooping? Ask him to smile.

Arms: Is she experiencing numbness or weakness in her arms? Ask her to raise them.

Speech: Is his speech slurred? Are you having difficulty understanding him? Ask him to repeat a simple sentence.

Time to call for help: If the person is exhibiting one or more of these signs, call 911 and get her to the nearest ­hospital as soon as possible.

Luckily Julie’s colleagues called for emergency medical help. She is on the road to recovery now.

I hope you never need BE FAST—and I wish you all a happy, healthy day!

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