Wollongong locals heartfelt thank you

Wollongong resident Tania Reay is marking National Stroke Week (August 2-8) by saying thank you to her husband Rob who saved her life.

When the 55 year old experienced a stroke earlier this year, she was incredibly grateful Rob, who is a nurse, knew the most common signs of stroke and called triple zero immediately.

“I was picking Rob up from work one night when I lost the use of my right arm and then the whole right sight of my body and my speech,” Tania said.

“I had no idea about stroke and had no known risk factors, but Rob’s swift response ensured I received the time-critical medical treatment I needed to stop the stroke’s attack on my brain.

“Four months on, I walk with a limp, I have trouble writing and typing and I can’t keep up with conversations, but Rob is my biggest supporter. He has read everything there is to read about stroke and is helping me make gains in my recovery. I am so lucky to have him.”

Stroke can happen to anyone at any age and can change lives in an instant.

In 2020, there were 190 first time strokes in the Cunningham electorate, while almost 3000 survivors of stroke are living in the community.

Tania and Rob have joined with Stroke Foundation to urge Wollongong residents to learn and share the most common signs of stroke, F.A.S.T (Face. Arms. Speech. Time), to help save lives and reduce disability from stroke.

Using the F.A.S.T test involves asking these simple questions:

Face Check their face. Has their mouth drooped?

Arms Can they lift both arms?

Speech Is their speech slurred? Do they understand you?

Time is critical. If you see any of these signs call triple zero (000) straight away

Stroke Foundation New South Wales State Manager Rhian Paton-Kelly thanked Tania for helping to spread the word about F.A.S.T.

“You don’t have to be a nurse like Rob, anyone can learn the most common signs of stroke and know what to do in a stroke emergency,” Ms Paton-Kelly said.

“We know the faster a stroke patient gets to hospital and receives medical treatment, the better their chance is of survival and successful rehabilitation.”

National Stroke Week is the Stroke Foundation’s annual stroke awareness campaign. The theme in 2021, is United by Stroke. Be United by Stroke by teaching your loved ones the F.A.S.T. message.

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