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Stroke Risks and Prevention

Stroke By the Numbers

Each year about 795,000 people in the United States experience a new or recurrent stroke — making stroke the nation's fifth leading cause of death.

On average, someone suffers a stroke every 40 seconds and dies from a stroke every four minutes. Stroke is also a leading cause of serious, long-term disability.

North Carolina has its fair share of stroke victims — about 14,000 North Carolinians are disabled by stroke each year, and more than 5,000 residents will lose their lives.

Impact on Men and Women

Stroke in not just a "man's disease." Although many women are more worried about getting breast cancer than they are about their risk of stroke, twice as many women die of stroke than of breast cancer every year. Both men and women need to be concerned about their risk of stroke.


Adopt habits that can help you avoid a stroke. Learn more about risks and prevention.




  • Balance

    Is the person losing his/her coordination or balance?

  • Eyes

    Is the person having trouble seeing out of one or both eyes?

  • Face

    Does the face look uneven or drift down?

  • Arm

    Does one arm drift down?

  • Speech

    Does the person's speech sound strange?

  • Time

    If you observe any of these signs, it is time
    to call 9-1-1. 

The faster a stroke patient receives treatment, the better the chances of recovery.

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