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E. What Everyone Should Know About Strokes

Narrator: This is Science Today. Acting fast can make all the difference when a stroke occurs. UCLA neurosurgeon John Frazee says the longer a patient waits, the more extensive the brain damage will be. Even if stroke symptoms subside, Frazee says it's important to get to the hospital...

Frazee: 'Cause there may be something to prevent this from happening again. And happening in a permanent way ... many symptoms disappear in the first hour and that should be nevertheless, a warning to go see somebody as an emergency.

Narrator: A stroke is a "brain attack" caused by a blood clot which cuts off oxygen to the brain, killing the tissue.

Frazee: If a patient comes in with a stroke with symptoms...paralysis, speech problems, vision problems, that have lasted more than an hour, the chances that they're going to recover in the next 24 hours is less than 14 percent.

Narrator: If treated on time, however, Frazee says new advances in stroke treatment can minimize brain damage, disability and death. For Science Today, I'm Larissa Branin.