Sub-acute stroke care and rehabilitation is available and accessible through Infinity Specialists, utilising the new primary stroke unit at St. Vincent’s Private hospital. This service is accessible only via a health professionals’ reference.
Health professionals can either call our On-Call Stroke team, available 24/7 on 0448 228 007 or via referral to the Emergency Department at St. Vincent’s Private hospital. An acceptance criterion has been established as follows:
- symptoms > 24 hours
- TIA symptoms completely resolved
- physicians requiring further investigations from recent stroke and hemorrhages (provided neurological interventions have been excluded).
If however, your patient presents with stroke symptoms within 24 hours, we strongly urge that the patient be discussed with Toowoomba Base Hospital’s Emergency Department or On-Call Stroke physician, for potential lysis and clot retrieval, as it is the only facility in Toowoomba that provides this assessment.
Whilst the stroke unit is in its initial phase, the ultimate goal will be to provide treatment and care for all private patients presenting with stroke symptoms including hyperacute presentations.
Signs of Stroke and What to Do!
FAST is an acronym to help you quickly recognise the warning signs and symptoms of stroke.
F: Face drooping. Ask the person to smile and see if one side is drooping. One side of the face may also be numb, and the smile may appear uneven.
A: Arm weakness. Ask the person to raise both arms. Is there a weakness or numbness on one side? One arm drifting downward is a sign of a one-sided arm weakness.
S: Speech Difficulty. People having a stroke may slur their speech or have trouble speaking at all. Speech may be incomprehensible. Ask the person to repeat a simple sentence and look for any speech abnormality.
T: Time to call 000! If a person shows any of the symptoms above, even if the symptoms went away, call 000 and get the person to a hospital immediately. In Toowoomba this still should be to the Base hospital for initial assessment.
What is a Stroke?
A stroke occurs when the blood supply to an area of the brain is cut off. The symptoms depend upon the region of the brain that is affected by the loss of blood supply and can include changes in sensation or motor control.
Symptoms of a stroke also depend on how much of the brain tissue is deprived of blood supply. For example, someone who has a mild stroke may experience temporary weakness of an arm or leg, but those with a more severe stroke may be permanently paralysed on one side of their body or be unable to speak. If the blood supply is not quickly restored, either on its own or via medical treatment, the effects may be permanent.
With a transient ischemic attack, or TIA, the stroke symptoms occur but go away on their own within a few hours. However, future risk of a major stroke is higher, and should be treated and investigated promptly.
Some people fully recover from strokes and some are left with some type of disability.