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Women Often Miss Signs of Stroke

Posted May 12 2010 6:55am
(HealthDay News) -- A new online survey of U.S. women finds only about one in four women aged 25 to 75 can name more than two primary symptoms of stroke.

The survey also found that women think that breast cancer is five times more common than stroke (women are actually twice as likely to die of stroke than breast cancer), and 40 percent of women surveyed weren't very concerned about experiencing a stroke.

In general, women surveyed weren't aware that women suffer more strokes than men, and one-quarter said they didn't believe stroke could happen at any age.

The researchers also found that black and Hispanic women knew fewer facts about stroke than white women in some specific areas of knowledge.

The main symptoms of stroke are:

  • Sudden difficulty speaking, understanding speech, or confusion
  • Sudden numbness or weakness in the limbs, particularly on one side
  • Sudden facial drooping or numbness and weakness on one side of the face
  • Sudden balance problems, dizziness or trouble walking
  • Sudden difficulty seeing with one or both eyes
  • Sudden severe headache

The online-only survey included 2,000 women in the United States, and was undertaken on behalf of HealthyWomen in conjunction with the American College of Emergency Physicians and National Stroke Association. It was funded by the Genentech, a biotech company that develops medications.

More information

For more on preventing stroke , visit the U.S. National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke.

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