Take steps to prevent secondary stroke for May, American Stroke Month

As hospitals, health professionals and healthcare systems, governments and leaders work to reduce community spread of the coronavirus in the U.S. and protect the most vulnerable individuals, the American Heart Association encourages heart attack and stroke survivors to takes steps for secondary prevention. Reducing risk of another event and staying as healthy as possible is more important than ever to avoid busy hospitals. Also, stroke survivors and people with heart disease may face increased risk for complications if they get COVID-19.

After a heart attack or stroke, as many as 1 in 4 survivors will have another one. Lifestyle changes and working closely with your doctor to manage your health can help minimize the risk of a repeat event.

Up to 80% of ischemic strokes and heart attacks may be prevented with medication (which may include aspirin as recommended by a doctor), and daily routines that help manage your high blood pressure, high cholesterol and diabetes. Your doctor can help you get started.

Heart attack and stroke are medical emergencies. Even as COVID-19 cases strain emergency medicine, experts say calling 9-1-1 is still the best way to access life-saving treatments for people who are experiencing heart attack or stroke symptoms. Emergency medical responders can assess symptoms, begin treatment in the ambulance, and transport the patient to the most appropriate hospital, if necessary.

Hospitals have plans in place to keep potentially contagious patients away from others and keep surfaces clean. Calling 9-1-1 and activating Emergency Medical Services (EMS) will ensure that patients have the best possible chance to beat a heart attack or stroke. 


As many in the nation face extended time at home, it is possible that stroke or heart attack warning signs may go unnoticed. It is important to check on those who live alone, regularly. Speaking on the phone or video calls can give important clues about common stroke warning signs, which can be remembered using the acronym F.A.S.T.: F for face drooping, A for arm weakness, S for speech difficulty and T meaning it is time to call 911.


The American Heart Association has resources to learn more about stroke warning signs, prevention and treatment. Download our free American Stroke Month community resource toolkit here:


01 – Letter, Brain Health, ASM, HBP Resource Kit

02 – Table of Contents, 2020 ASM-HBP Resource Kit

03 – Take Action- 2020 ASMonth and National HBP Month

04 – ASM 2020 Prevention, Messaging ToolkitFINAL

05 – Stroke – FAST Infographic – NEW 04.2019

06 – Stroke, HA I Will Prevent, Secondary Prev 2020

07 – Stroke – AFib Can Happen To Anyone

08 – Stroke – Women Higher Risk for Stroke

09 – Stroke – Control Risk Factors for Brain Health Infographic

10 – Brain – Willpower Up

11 – Brain – Stop Stress In Its Tracks

12 – Brain – Fight Stress With Healthy Habits

13 – Brain – Resilience in the Workplace

14 – Brain – Loving-Kindness Meditation

15 – Brain – 21 Days of Gratitude

16 – Brain – Clean Up Your Sleep Hygiene

17 – BP – LS7 How To Manage Blood Pressure

18 – BP – LTAS, High Blood Pressure and Stroke

19 – BP – ABH, What is High Blood Pressure

20 – BP – Consequences of High Blood Pressure

21 – BP – Blood Pressure Measurements Instructions

22 – BP – Infographic, 7 Tips for Accurate BP Measuring

23 – BP – Infographic, What Can I Do To Improve My BP

24 – BP – ABH, Why Should I Limit Sodium

25 – BP – Guide for Conversation With Your Doctor

26 – BP – ABH, What Is High Blood Pressure Medicine

27 – BP – FREE AHACheckChangeControl BP Program

28 – Other – Online SUPPORT Network (virtual ‘warm blanket’)

29 – Coronavirus – AHA Making an Impact 04.22