LAWTON, OK (KSWO)- The National Stroke Association estimates that each year more than 800,000 people experience a new or recurrent stroke. Comanche County Memorial Hospital is a primary stroke center that works to get patients who have suffered a stroke in and treated as quickly as possible.
"Stroke is an under-treated and under-diagnosed illness in the United States. Many people are under the impression that there aren't effective treatments for it and there are effective treatments. So, by expediting their arrival here in the emergency department in the hospital, and actively treating them aggressively they'll have the best possible outcome," explained Dr. Damien Kinzler.
The hospital has set a goal to treat ideal stroke patient within 60 minutes. They have a clock on the wall in every trauma room to let them know how long it's been. Hospital officials say right now their lowest time is 22 minutes but they're always trying to get that number lower.
"Time is brain. Every second, every minute it counts. Lots of neurons are dying and we want to be able to have that patient come in that is affected by a stroke with their different symptoms and be able to let them leave our hospital improved and be able to go home and be with their families and live out their life that they were living prior to having these symptoms," said Alicia Webster.
Alicia Webster, the STEMI and Stroke coordinator for CCMH says being a primary stroke center is not only good for the hospital, but for the community as well.
"For the hospital to have this, I think that it shows our continued improvement and our focus on quality health care and that's something that's huge. I mean, we all go into this business wanting to make a difference in our patients lives and that's what we're doing," Webster said.
"The patients have much better outcomes at the end of the day it's all about the patient," said Dr. Kinzler.
Comanche County Memorial Hospital is providing free stroke risk assessments on May 18th and 19th from 8 in the morning until 3 in the afternoon. They're also offering a $20 blood draw for a lipid panel and, for $3 more, it will include A-1-C and hemoglobin. For the best results, they ask that you don't eat or drink for at least 10 hours prior to.