Stroke Prevention Saturday – serving the community, saving lives

After experiencing a heart attack, two strokes and a ministroke, Mr. Kissel wasn’t taking any chances with his health.

“In 2013 I was visiting my doctors regularly and I was doing everything I could to prevent another stroke,” said Kissel. “When my wife and I heard about TMC’s free Stroke Preventions Saturday – we knew right away we’d be going.”

stroke awareness

Each year, Tucson Medical Center hosts Stroke Prevention Saturday, a local event providing free vascular screenings. The wide-breadth of tests involve many medical professionals and advanced diagnostic equipment.

Why has TMC invested in providing free events like Stroke Saturday

“Because stroke is the third leading cause of death and the leading cause of serious, long-term disability,” said Renee McAloney, the TMC stroke program coordinator. “It is uplifting to know we are assisting community members who may not have access to these important screenings – I believe we are saving lives.”

From checking cholesterol and oxygen saturation to an electrocardiogram and a carotid doppler ultrasound, attendees have the opportunity to discuss results with a health care provider.

The screening that revealed a life-threatening issue

Carotid doppler ultrasound screening provided at the 2013 Stroke Prevention Saturday revealed Mr. Kissel’s carotid artery (the blood vessel delivering blood to the brain) was more than 50 percent blocked by plaque.

Kissel took the reading to his doctors. “I was referred to a vascular surgeon who said I needed to have surgery right away to clear the blockage.”

After the surgery, Mr. Kissel learned just how serious the situation was. “The doctor told me the soft plague in my carotid artery was dangling and could have broken off at any moment and caused a massive stroke.”

Since that procedure, Mr. Kissel has not experienced another stroke or ministroke. “The Stroke Prevention Saturday screening led to my surgery, and I’m grateful,” he said.

Make screening part of your annual care

The event is a now part of the annual routine in the Kissel household. “It takes place every spring in the March to April time frame, and I make sure my wife goes every year to get checked.”

Mr. Kissel feels healthier, strong and better these days and he says Stroke Prevention Saturday made a difference. “I’m not sure what might have happened without that screening.”

For more information about Stroke Prevention Saturday, contact TMC for Seniors at (520) 324-4345 or seniorservices@tmcaz.com

Know your stroke risk

Anyone can have a stroke, even children although the causes in children tend to be different. The elderly are not the only ones at risk for stroke although age is one factor. Stroke risk also increases with factors like increased blood pressure, diabetes, high cholesterol and atrial fibrillation. Know those factors you can control for. This guide from the American Stroke Association highlights factors you need to be aware of.

 

Sign up to receive the TMC for Seniors event calendar  which include events like Stroke Prevention Saturday.

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Tucson Medical Center | 5301 E. Grant Road | Tucson, Arizona 85712 | (520) 327-5461
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