Medical symptoms are a funny thing. Some people ignore them. Others obsess about them, frequently spending hours on the computer trying to figure out if a headache means brain cancer. Both of these behaviors really don’t do you any good. In my opinion, you should know what your body feels like; if you feel or observe something out of the ordinary, by all means go to the doctor and have it checked out.

Some symptoms are obvious. If you feel a sudden, crushing chest pain, perhaps combined with shortness of breath, think heart attack. Don’t write it off as indigestion and forget about it.  Call 911.  On the flip side, high blood pressure is often called “the silent killer,” because there are usually no symptoms.

But stroke is a different story. There are symptoms that many people are not aware of,  according to an article by HealthDay reporter Ed Edelson.

The article points out that you need to call 911 immediately, if you suspect a stroke. You may not have time to get in the car and fight traffic on the way to the emergency room.  When it comes to strokes, and for that matter, heart attacks, seconds count.

Just in case you think strokes only attack older men and women, consider this article by Jeannine Stein in the Los Angeles Times.