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Marching bands, colorful floats, people throwing candy into the crowd, and Santa Claus—those are just a few of the surprises families enjoy each year at the Titusville Christmas parade. But for one woman, last year's parade held a different sort of surprise.

 

Pay Attention to Your Body

Jane Smith (not her real name) was standing on the sidewalk taking pictures of friends and family at the parade when she suddenly started feeling "bad." After she put down her camera, she felt tingling on the right side of her body and very quickly became weak all over.

 

That's when she told family members nearby, "I'm having a stroke."

 

Then Smith lost the ability to speak and her friends and family called for help. She was rushed to Parrish Medical Center's emergency department where she was evaluated, treated and cared for with compassion and excellence.

 

Pay Attention to Your Healthcare Provider

Smith, who is in her mid-60s, had been on medication for high cholesterol for many years. Because her cholesterol levels were now normal, she thought it would be OK to stop taking her medication. She had not discussed this decision with her doctor, however. When she attended the Titusville Christmas parade, she had been off her prescribed medication for approximately six months.

 

Luckily for her, just the week before she had received an educational flier from PMC that described the signs and symptoms of stroke and what to do if they developed. That's how she knew what was happening to her.

 

Pay Attention to Your Mail

Smith is extremely fortunate—her symptoms have completely resolved and she has had no lasting physical problems.

 

"I never would have so quickly recognized what was happening to me if it hadn't been for the flier I received," Smith says. "I am so grateful for that, as well as the excellent care I received at Parrish Medical Center. I felt I was in safe hands with such a dedicated healthcare team."

 

So the next time you receive a postcard, flier, newsletter or magazine from Parrish Medical Center, please don't throw it away. Take time to read it.

 

The information it contains might save your life.