Stroke Education and Treatment

Hoag Stroke Month

  • Click here to read the story of a stroke survivor and the amazing care she received at Hoag.

Ranked among the top five percent in the nation for stroke treatment, Hoag has been certified as a Comprehensive Stroke Center and Hoag Irvine has been certified a Primary Stroke Center by DNV Healthcare USA, Inc.* Hoag has also been awarded the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association’s Get With The Guidelines®-Stroke Gold Plus Quality Achievement Award with Target: StrokeSM Honor Roll Elite. This is the twelfth year Hoag has received the Gold Plus Quality Achievement Award and the sixth year for the Target: Stroke Honor Roll Elite.

Hoag Hospital provides comprehensive services for the evaluation, prevention, treatment and ongoing care of stroke patients. When it comes to stroke, studies have shown a significant improvement in outcomes when best practice protocols are applied. Surviving a stroke not only means seeking immediate medical attention at the first sign of symptoms, but also receiving treatment at a medical center experienced in acute stroke management.

What is Stroke?

To understand a stroke, think of it as a heart attack that happens in the brain. A stroke (or brain attack) is a potentially fatal condition that occurs when a blood clot, or ruptured blood vessel, interferes with blood flow to the brain. When this happens, part of the brain cannot get the blood and oxygen it needs, so it starts to die.

There are 2 main types of stroke.

a diagram of ischemic and hemorrhagic strokes

  • Ischemic: when there is a blockage in the brain artery. (this is the most common type)
  • Hemorrhagic: when the brain artery bursts and blood leaks into or around the brain tissue

Every 40 seconds, someone in America has a stroke. It is the Number One cause of disability and the fifth leading cause of death in adults. Depending on the type, extent and location of the damage – as well as how quickly emergency care is given – a stroke can result in death or may permanently impair a person’s ability to move, speak, think, remember, respond normally or live independently.

Warning Signs of Stroke

  • Sudden change in vision – blurred or loss of vision
  • Sudden confusion or difficulty of speech – slurred or sluggish, loss of words or difficulty understanding words
  • Sudden weakness – loss of strength in face, hand, arm and/or leg on one side of the body
  • Sudden loss of balance or dizziness – difficulty walking or clumsiness
  • Sudden change in sensation – heaviness, numbness or unusual sensation in face, hand, arm and/or leg on one side of the body
  • Sudden severe headache, unexplained, often described as the worst headache ever

Even if the symptoms only last a few minutes, it could be a mini-stroke, which is called a TIA (transient ischemic attack). TIA is also a medical emergency that requires immediate medical attention. An unrecognized and untreated TIA may be followed by a major disabling stroke. Therefore, if any of the above symptoms occur, it is critical to seek immediate emergency treatment.

Another quick way to identify a stroke is to follow the BE FAST signs:

be fast stroke acronym

BALANCE – Sudden loss of balance or dizziness

EYES – Sudden blurred vision or loss of vision

FACE – Sudden facial droop or uneven smile

ARM – Sudden arm weakness or numbness

SPEECH – Sudden slurred speech; sudden difficulty speaking or understanding​

TIME – Time to Call 911 and get to a stroke certified hospital immediately

Hoag Hospital Newport Beach was certified as a Comprehensive Stroke Center by DNV GL Healthcare USA, Inc. in October 2016.

Hoag Pickup Family Stroke Program