Health chiefs have re-launched a stroke awareness campaign to urge North East residents to act FAST if they spot the symptoms.
Public Health England is renewing its FAST initiative, which encourages people to call 999 if they notice some common symptoms of stroke in themselves or others.
Since the first campaign launched in 2009 an additional 38,600 people have attended hospital within the vital three-hour window to receive medical attention, and around 4,000 fewer people have become disabled as a result of stroke.
The FAST programme relates to:
l Face – has someone’s face fallen on one side and can they smile?
lArms – can they raise both arms and keep the position?
l Speech – is their speech slurred?
l Time – call 999 immediately if you see any of the above signs.
A mini-stroke has similar symptoms, but it lasts for a much shorter time.