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By Dr. Omar Ghausi

November 21, 2015 (San Diego)--On average, someone suffers a stroke every 45 seconds. The good news is that 80% of all strokes are preventable. Equally important, patients who arrive at an emergency room within 3 hours of their first symptoms tend to have less disability 3 months after a stroke than those who delayed care.

Some of the keys to managing risk factors are to control high blood pressure, eat a healthy diet, maintain a healthy weight, exercise, don’t smoke and limit alcohol use.

With a stroke, time lost is brain lost, and it is important to receive care at a Stroke-Receiving Center to ensure access to the latest advances in stroke treatment, including tPA, considered the Gold Standard for treatment of ischemic stroke. If administered in time—typically within 3 hours—patients who receive this clot-busting drug may have a better chance at recovery.

Signs of a stroke can be remembered by the acronym F.A.S.T.: Facial drooping, Arm weakness, Speech difficulty and Time to call 911.

Dr. Omar Ghausi is a board-certified general neurologist with the Alvarado Physicians Medical Group and medical director of Alvarado Hospital's stroke program. Alvarado Hospital's stroke program is designated an Advanced Primary Stroke Center by The Joint Commission. For more information, visit