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Cincinnati Stroke Scale

By , Contributing Writers
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F (face) FACIAL DROOP: Have patient smile or show teeth. Is the smile even or lop-sided? Normal: Both sides of the face move equally or not at all. Abnormal: One side of the patient's face droops.

A (arm) MOTOR WEAKNESS: Arm drift (patient closes eyes, extends arms, palms up) Normal: Arms remain extended equally, or move equally or do not move at all. Abnormal: One arm drops down when compared with the other.

S (speech): "You can’t teach an old dog new tricks." (repeat phrase) Normal: Phrase is repeated clearly and correctly. Abnormal: Words are slurred (dysarthria) or abnormal (aphasia), or he can't speak.

T (time) TIME LAST SEEN NORMAL: ________

The FAST test has proven to be very good at predicting stroke, and not just for emergency medical technicians (EMTs). Like knowing the warning signs, it is another helpful tool that stroke caregivers and families can use to reduce the time to treatment.