Why Women Have More Strokes Than Men

Women may have invented Kevlar but we are not bulletproof. Learn why we are have more strokes than men. GO RED NORTH FULTON!

Stephanie Kwolek is the chemist who invented Kevlar in 1965. She started working as a chemist in 1946. While experimenting, Stephanie created a strange solution that was very different from ones she’d created before. They were amazed when the new fiber came back: it would not break when nylon typically would, and had a stiffness at least nine times greater than anything she’d made before. Besides bullet-proof vests, it’s used in products as diverse as fiber-optic cables, aircraft parts, canoes, brake linings, space vehicles, boats, parachutes, skis, and building materials. The most famous application, of course, is the Kevlar vest. Thousands of lives have been saved by the bullet-stopping fiber.

Even so, women are not bulletproof have more strokes than men. According to the American Stroke Association, each year more than 100,000 women under the age of 65 in the United States will have a stroke.

If you suspect that someone has had or is having a stroke, note the time when any symptoms first appear. If given within three hours of the first symptom, there is an FDA-approved clot-buster medication that may reduce long-term disability for the most common type of stroke. Every minute counts for stroke patients and acting F.A.S.T. (see below for details) can lead patients to the stroke treatments they desperately need. Many Americans are not aware that stroke patients may not be eligible for stroke treatments if they arrive at the hospital after the three-hour window.

Common stroke symptoms seen in both men and women:

  • Sudden numbness or weakness of face, arm or leg — especially on one side of the body
  • Sudden confusion, trouble speaking or understanding
  • Sudden trouble seeing in one or both eyes
  • Sudden trouble walking, dizziness, loss of balance or coordination
  • Sudden severe headache with no known cause

    Women may report unique stroke symptoms:

    • sudden face and limb pain
    • sudden hiccups
    • sudden nausea
    • sudden general weakness
    • sudden chest pain
    • sudden shortness of breath
    • sudden palpitations
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    If you suspect that someone is having or has had a stroke, think FAST:

    F—FACE: Ask the person to smile. Does one side of the face droop?
    A—ARMS: Ask the person to raise both arms. Does one arm drift downward?
    S—SPEECH: Ask the person to repeat a simple phrase. Is their speech slurred or strange?
    T—TIME: If you observe any of these signs, call 9-1-1 immediately.

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