Know the signs of stroke to saves lives. Samantha was lucky

Heart disease and stroke are the second leading cause of death in Canada and are the number one cause of premature death for women. But it doesn't have to be that way if you know the signs and call 9-1-1 immediately. Sign up today to get life-saving information and healthy living tips delivered to your inbox.

Take Samantha Gomez's experience one morning: She was getting ready for work, and looking around for her keys, when she noticed a bewildered look from her parents and fiancé.

"In my mind, I was asking, 'Where are my car keys?'", she recalls, as she was trying to leave the house. "But in reality, I kept saying, 'Where are my limes?'. I thought I made perfect sense, so I didn't get why everyone looked so worried."

At only 23 years old, Samantha was experiencing the first symptoms of what turned out to be a severe stroke.

She didn't know it at the time, but recognizing the signs early and calling 9-1-1 immediately could make a difference.

Samantha was rushed to a nearby hospital where a CT scan confirmed her condition. Unfortunately, the medical team didn't have clot-busting medication on hand, and she missed the brief window when the medicine could help lessen the stroke's effects.

If Samantha was going to stand a chance at recovering her ability to speak, she needed to start intense therapy right away. With help from her fiancé, she made incredible progress in a short amount of time.

Her outcome was unexpected given that about 60% of people in Canada who have had a stroke live with some degree of disability that impacts their daily activities.

Today, Samantha is married and has two children and feels blessed and grateful for the support that helped her beat stroke.

Stroke can cause sudden devastation, including silencing the ability to speak. Sign up today to receive life-saving information and healthy living tips from Heart & Stroke, and join a community determined to beat heart disease and stroke.
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