LA QUINTA, Calif. - Stroke is the nation's third leading cause of death, affecting nearly 700,000 people every year. On average, someone suffers a stroke every 45 seconds in this country.
King Wilder of La Quinta recently survived a stroke.
"I was doing some laundry and I was moving some clothing from the washer to the dryer and felt disoriented. Then tried to push the start button on the dryer and my finger wasn't hitting the button so i knew something was wrong," said Wilder.
He spent more than 15 minutes on the phone with a 911 operator trying to communicate what was wrong.
Eventually police arrived at his home and Wilder was rushed to Eisenhower Medical Center in Rancho Mirage which is a certified primary stroke center.
Wilder got to the hospital fast enough to receive TPA medicine which is injected into the blood and dissolves the clot in the brain. Wilder felt better and could talk in just a few minutes after getting the medicine.
"If you are having an acute stroke one of the symptoms is that you are not making sense, you are aphasic, your speech is not right, the pattern is not right," said Mehran Elly, MD a radiologist at Eisenhower.
With stroke getting help as quickly as possible is critical. If you are having a stroke and are unable to communicate clearly here's advice from Wilder.
"Don't try to say a sentence. Try to say help or stroke. Just try to get out that information and just keep your responses to yes or no," said Wilder.
If you're having a stroke, you should call 911 as quickly as possible. Immediate treatment could reduce long-term effects of a stroke and prevent death.