Mountainside Hospital Celebrates Stroke Awareness Month with Free Risk Assessments

June 17, 2010 12:26 PM

Montclair, NJ – To kick off this year’s Stroke Awareness Month, Mountainside Hospital held a free stroke education event for the local community on May 4. The informative event included discussions of personal stroke risk factors, signs and symptoms, when to seek medical attention and the diagnosis and treatment of stroke. Mountainside Hospital’s Stroke Coordinator, Amy Paolella, RN, continued the hospital’s efforts to raise stroke awareness in the community with a special visit to the fourth grade class of Saint Joseph’s School in East Orange last week.

A stroke is a sudden interruption in blood flow in the brain due to a blockage or a rupture in a blood vessel in or leading to the brain. This interruption deprives brain tissue of the essential oxygen and nutrients carried in the blood. Even just a few minutes without sufficient oxygen can cause brain cells to suffer permanent damage or die. This frequently jeopardizes an individual’s ability to walk, talk, or even breathe.

Stroke is the third leading cause of death in the United States and the leading reason for disability among adults. Nationwide, it afflicts more than 700,000 people annually; about one person every 45 seconds. In the New Jersey and New York metropolitan area, with one of the highest incidences of stroke in the country, the Mountainside Hospital Primary Stroke Center is a leader in providing around-the-clock stroke services.

Know the Signs
Despite the severe damage and death associated with stroke, only 26 percent of the general public can name even one of its warning signs, according to the American Heart Association.

Common indicators of a stroke include:
    •    Numbness or weakness of the face, arm, or leg (especially on one side of the body)
    •    Sudden confusion, trouble speaking or understanding speech
    •    Sudden trouble seeing in one or both eyes
    •    Sudden trouble walking, dizziness, loss of balance or coordination
    •    Sudden severe headache with no known cause
Although new medications and cutting-edge surgical interventions can minimize the effect of a stroke, time is of the essence. It's important to recognize symptoms and call 911 for immediate assistance.

The Mountainside Hospital Primary Stroke Center
Designated a Primary Stroke Center by the New Jersey State Department of Health and Senior Services, the Mountainside Hospital Stroke Center provides fast and accurate diagnosis and collaborative treatment. Mountainside’s experienced staff is specially trained in the care of stroke patients. The hospital offers emergency care, radiology services, laboratory services and rehabilitation services all on a 24-hour basis.

About Mountainside Hospital
Mountainside Hospital has been serving community health needs since 1891. Today, the 365-bed private hospital is devoted to delivering personalized, primary-care centered services while also functioning as a learning center via its nursing school and affiliations with other educational institutions. Within Mountainside Hospital, patients have immediate access to the finest, most current treatment alternatives at specialized centers which focus on ambulatory care, women’s health, cancer care, heart failure and other needs. Among community hospitals statewide, Mountainside is one of a small, select group approved to provide emergency angioplasty and physician triage in its Emergency Room. For further information about care at Mountainside Hospital, go to or call (973) 429-6000.



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