When Stroke Strikes, Act F.A.S.T.

Our F.A.S.T. campaign wants to help everyone to achieve a better understanding of the warning signs of stroke.

Know the signs and act F.A.S.T.

The F.A.S.T. acronym was created as a helper for people to remember the main warning signs of stroke so that they can act immediately in the case of a stroke by dialling 999.

F.A.S.T. stands for:

F - Face

A - Arms

S - Speech

T - Time

Has their face fallen on one side. Can they smile?

Can they raise both their arms and keep them there?

is their speech slurred?

To call 999 if you see any single one of these signs.

Stroke is Ireland’s third biggest killer but hundreds of lives could be saved each year if more people knew that stroke is a medical emergency.

Stroke destroys two million brain cells every minute so TIME IS BRAIN. If you suspect that someone is having a stroke call 999 immediately.

When stroke strikes, act F.A.S.T.

Medical advances but time is still vital

Until recently, many believed that stroke represented a sentence of death or lifelong disability. Medical advances – such as the clot-busting drug thrombolysis – have helped to make stroke one of the most preventable and treatable of all diseases.

But the more time that passes after a stroke the more brain cells die.


Every minute matters, act F.A.S.T.

Calling an ambulance and getting straight to hospital can make all the difference for stroke survivors. Quick treatment for stroke patients can save lives and reduce the disability a person might have after their stroke.

By acting F.A.S.T. you can increase a stroke survivor’s ability to return to their normal life.

Thrombolysis and suitability

Some strokes which involve a blockage or blood clot can be treated by thrombolysis. This is a clot reducing drug treatment that aims to dissolve the blood clot with powerful blood thinners.

It can have a powerful impact in preventing damage to brain cells caused by stroke. But there is a short time window of a few hours in which patients suitable for thrombolysis can receive it.

For all stroke patients, whether they are suitable for thrombolysis or not, receiving emergency medical care improves their chances of making the best recovery possible.

Learn About Stroke

One in five people will have a stroke at some time in their life. Most are over 65, but stroke can strike at any age.

Learn More