Stroke care in Port St. Lucie

St. Lucie Medical Center provides expert stroke care to patients throughout the Treasure Coast. Our hospital is a Primary Stroke Center, as designated by The Joint Commission, and participates in the Get With The Guidelines® – Stroke program through the American Stroke Association. Our stroke services offer the fast, life-saving care you need when every second matters.

If you or someone you know is experiencing a stroke, call 911 immediately. To learn more about stroke care at our facility, please call our Consult-A-Nurse® team at (772) 742-9060.

We provide vascular and cardiac services for complete treatment and rehabilitation following a stroke. You can feel confident in the multidisciplinary continuum of care you or a loved one will receive when you choose St. Lucie Medical Center for stroke care.

What is a stroke?

A stroke, also called a brain attack, is a type of vascular disease that affects the arteries leading to and within the brain. A stroke occurs when blood flow to the brain is interrupted by a blockage from a clot or from an artery within the brain that has burst. When that happens, part of the brain cannot get the blood and oxygen it needs, so it starts to die.

There are two main types of stroke:

  • Ischemic stroke—This type of stroke occurs when an artery becomes blocked and prevents proper blood flow to the brain.
  • Hemorrhagic stroke—This type of stroke results from a pooling of blood in the brain, caused by a rupture, that puts pressure on the brain tissue.

Stroke symptoms

The lack of blood flow and oxygen to the brain presents several symptoms, which can include:

  • Sudden numbness or weakness of the face, arms or legs, especially on one side of the body
  • Sudden confusion, trouble speaking or understanding
  • Sudden trouble seeing in one or both eyes
  • Sudden trouble walking, dizziness, loss of balance or coordination
  • Sudden, severe headache with no known cause

Stroke risk factors

It is never too early to start taking control of your heart health. Certain stroke risk factors are manageable and can help reduce your risk of stroke. Risk factors for stroke include:

  • Carotid artery disease
  • Diabetes
  • Excessive alcohol intake
  • High blood pressure
  • High cholesterol
  • Illegal drug use
  • Obesity
  • Peripheral arterial disease
  • Physical inactivity and sedentary lifestyle
  • Tobacco
  • Atrial fibrillation (a-fib)

Talk to your doctor about how you can manage your risk factors.

Advanced stroke treatment

As soon as a patient exhibiting stroke symptoms arrives at our emergency room, we immediately use advanced computed tomography (CT) scanning to identify the location, type, nature and extent of a stroke and any resulting brain injury. Our ER, staffed with emergency medicine doctors, neurologists and neurosurgeons, is open 24/7 and is always ready to treat patients with stroke symptoms.

We employ expertly trained ER staff to quickly identify and administer the most effective stroke treatment for each patient. Tissue plasminogen activator (tPA) is an advanced, clot-dissolving drug that is effective in breaking up a blood clot and restoring proper blood flow. When it comes to a stroke, every aspect of care is time sensitive. The tPA drug must be given within the first three hours of presenting stroke symptoms.

Stroke support group

St. Lucie Medical Center hosts a stroke support group for stroke survivors to come together in a common place to discuss the life changes and challenges of stroke recovery. This support group meets the second Wednesday of every month at 2 p.m. To learn more about our stroke support group, please call (772) 398-3583.

Registration is not required to join us at the support group.