• 29-OCT-2014

  • SOURCE: American Heart Association

American Heart Association/American Stroke Association Urges Education of No. 2 killer worldwide

Supermodel/Actress/Author and Stroke Survivor Claudia Mason Discusses Her Stroke and the Warning Signs Everyone Should Know

The global community celebrates World Stroke Day each year on Oct. 29 to raise awareness for the world's second-leading cause of death. In America, someone has a stroke every 40 seconds. Women are more likely to suffer a stroke than to be diagnosed with breast cancer.

Like most Americans, stroke wasn't a concern for Supermodel Claudia Mason. After a vigorous dance class, Mason didn't have any unusual pain and had an uneventful night's sleep. But the next day a severe headache coupled with faulty vision alerted her that something was very wrong. Mason had suffered a tear in her vertebral artery – most likely in that dance class – that lead to an ischemic stroke.

Many stroke patients do not get to the hospital in time for lifesaving treatment. For World Stroke Day, the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association's Together to End Stroke Initiative is asking Americans to learn the acronym F.A.S.T. for stroke. F.A.S.T. helps people remember the common signs of stroke and what to do if you suspect a stroke.

F.A.S.T. stands for:
F - Face Drooping: Does one side of the face droop or is it numb?
A - Arm Weakness: Is one arm weak or numb?
S - Speech Difficulty: Is speech slurred, are they unable to speak, or are they hard to understand?
T - Time to call 9-1-1: If the person shows any of these symptoms, even if the symptoms go away, call 9-1-1 and get them to the hospital immediately.

Mason and Carolyn Brockington, M.D., spokesperson for the American Stroke Association and director of the Stroke Center at Mount Sinai St. Luke's-Roosevelt Hospital in New York City, share Mason's story and explain the signs of stroke. They also discuss the American Stroke Association's Together to End Stroke initiative and share how to get involved for World Stoke Day.

Mason, who has recovered from her stroke, models the Stroke Solidarity String, the worldwide symbol for stroke, in a new PSA for the American Stroke Association available at www.localheart.org.