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Stroke Center


Fort Sanders Regional Medical Center has been recognized by The Joint Commission and the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association as a Joint Commission Comprehensive Stroke Center, which means it is part of an elite group of providers focused on complex stroke care. Complex Stroke Centers are recognized as industry leaders and are responsible for setting the national agenda in highly-specialized stroke care.

As a Stroke Center of Excellence, the care provided by Fort Sanders and Patricia Neal Rehabilitation Center physicians and staff is second to none. In addition to holding a  Comprehensive Stroke Center certification, we also received two separate stroke accreditations from the Commission on the Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities (CARF). These designations are a tribute to our committed medical team, excellent nursing and therapy services, and state-of-the-artdiagnostics, treatment, and rehabilitation. 

What is a Stroke?

A stroke occurs when the blood flow to an area of the brain is interrupted by a blocked or broken blood vessel. When a stroke occurs, it kills brain cells in the immediate area. When the brain cells die, they release chemicals that set off a chain reaction that endangers brain cells in a larger surrounding area of brain tissue. Without prompt medical treatment, this larger area will also die. When brain cells die, the abilities that area of the brain controls are lost or impaired. The degree of recovery depends on the amount of brain cell death. To learn more about the three types of strokes, click here.

There are several steps you can take to prevent stroke. The first is to know your risk for having a stroke. A stroke assessment will help you identify steps you may need to take to lower your risk level. There are also several prevention guidelines to help you guard against the possibility of stroke.


If you think someone is having a stroke, do this simple test:


Ask the person to smile. Does one side of the face droop?


Ask the person to raise both arms. Does one arm drift downward?


Ask the person to repeat a simple sentence. Are the words slurred? Is the sentence repeated correctly?


If the person shows any of these symptoms, time is important.

Call 911.