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Stroke Care

When stroke occurs, act fast—for life.

Hear the clock ticking? If you’re suffering a stroke, each precious second counts. Stroke victims require critical treatment from the time symptoms begin in order to be more likely to recover and less likely to have permanent disabilities. Timely treatment can in some cases reverse the stroke, and is more likely to prevent death.

At HCA Midwest Health, we are committed to ensuring that any patient with a neurologic condition such as stroke has access to the closest, most convenient, and most appropriate point of care within our extensive network.

Kansas City's Leading Stroke Centers

As Kansas City’s leading healthcare provider, we have seven hospitals and five Primary Stroke Care Centers throughout the region, offering streamlined and effective care designed for the best possible outcomes. We’re equipped with acute care stroke teams, advanced technology, and sophisticated imaging to achieve long-term success in improving outcomes, plus in-patient and outpatient rehabilitation to get you back to life.

Take a Free Stroke Risk Assessment Online

From stroke diagnosis and treatment to rehabilitation, HCA Midwest Health Primary Stroke Centers maintain specialized resources, including experienced neurologists, neuroradiologists and neurosurgeons, for stroke patients.

When minutes matter, we’re right where you need to be.

Call 911 if you or a loved one has signs or symptoms of a stroke. Don’t drive to the nearest Emergency Room—call 911 to initiate emergency response. Remember: Stroke is a deadly race against the clock. Act FAST.


HCA Midwest Health offers a telemedicine program for stroke patients throughout our rural communities. Our Telestroke network provides physicians and patients 24-hour access to stroke experts and specialized services not otherwise available. Advanced videoconferencing systems allow our stroke specialists to be “in the room” with the patient and doctor in the rural hospital’s emergency room. Our stroke specialists help evaluate the patient and consult on diagnosis, treatment or appropriate transfer. The goal is to keep patients near their family and friends and only transfer when specialized care is needed.

Stroke is a disease that affects the arteries leading to and within the brain. It occurs when a blood vessel that carries oxygen and nutrients to the brain is either blocked by a clot or bursts (or ruptures). When that happens, part of the brain can’t get critical blood and oxygen, so it and brain cells die.

Stroke is a major cause of death and disability

A leading cause of death and serious, long-term disability in this country, stroke affects nearly 800,000 people annually. About 600,000 of these strokes are first attacks, and 185,000 are recurrent attacks. However, many still don’t understand how to recognize a stroke or the action they should take.

FAST (which stands for Face, Arm, Speech, Time test) is one of the easiest ways to identify stroke signs and symptoms. If a person is experiencing facial droop, if his or her arm or leg goes weak, if he or she has slurred or garbled speech, call 9-1-1 immediately to activate emergency response.

Less common symptoms of stroke may include sudden nausea or vomiting; fainting; seizures; confusion; or coma. It’s important to note that while strokes usually happen suddenly, they can also occur over hours or several small strokes can even occur over time. As the stroke becomes more acute, symptoms intensify.

A clot that obstructs the flow of blood to the brain causes an ischemic stroke. A hemorrhagic stroke is caused when a blood vessel ruptures, preventing blood flow to the brain. A TIA (transient ischemic attack), or mini stroke, is caused by a temporary blood clot.

Regardless of the type of stroke, the condition requires immediate medical attention.

  • Myth # 1: Strokes only happen to older people. Strokes can happen in young people, including infants. In fact, nearly a quarter of strokes occur in people younger than 65
  • Myth #2: Strokes are typically difficult to recognize. Three-quarters of the time, even a layperson can easily diagnose a stroke using the FAST test.
  • Myth #3: Women are protected from strokes. Each year 55,000 more women actually suffer strokes than than men—and it’s the third leading cause of death in women.
  • Myth #4: You can treat a stroke at home by taking aspirin. In fact, if you are experiencing a bleeding— or hemorrhagic—stroke, aspirin could potentially make the situation worse. The priority with a stroke is to call 9-1-1 and get to the ER for diagnosis and treatment as quickly as possible.
Certain factors increase your risk of stroke, but can’t be changed, such as:
  • Race: People of African American, Hispanic, or Asian/Pacific Islander descent are at increased risk.
  • Age: Older than 55 years of age
  • Family history of stroke

Other factors that may increase your risk can be changed such as:

  • Drug abuse
  • Smoking
  • Physical inactivity

Certain medical condition can increase your risk of stroke; management or prevention of these conditions can significantly decrease your risk:

  • High blood pressure
  • High cholesterol levels: Specifically high-LDL bad cholesterol
  • Low bone mineral density: Especially in women
  • Obesity and metabolic syndrome