How to detect a mini-stroke
A transient ischaemic attack (TIA) or mini-stroke can present these symptoms: weakness or numbness on one side of the body, difficulty in speaking, drooping of half the face, loss of vision in one eye or double vision.
These symptoms last less than 24 hours. The significance of a TIA is that once it occurs, the risk of a full-blown stroke is high.
To prevent this, people who have experienced a TIA must see a doctor as soon as possible.
Their risk factors can then be addressed and treated to reduce the risk of further clots blocking blood vessels to the brain.
How to detect a stroke
The symptoms of stroke are sudden-onset numbness or weakness of the face, arm or leg, especially on one side, difficulty in speaking, confusion in understanding what others are saying, unsteadiness in walking, and a severe headache or dizziness. If a person has any of these symptoms, he may be having a stroke.
Use the FAST acronym to look out for signs of stroke
F: Face: Ask the person to smile. Does one side of the face droop?
A: Arm: Ask the person to raise both arms. Does one arm drift downwards?
S: Speech: Ask the person to repeat a phrase. Does the speech sound slurred or strange?
If you observe or experience any of these signs, call 995 and go to a hospital immediately.
•Sources: Dr Ho King Hee, a neurologist at Gleneagles Hospital Singapore; and Dr Carol Tham, consultant, Department of Neurology, National Neuroscience Institute