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Luke Perry's death: Stroke warning signs to look out for

Posted at 7:32 AM, Mar 05, 2019
and last updated 2019-03-05 15:43:05-05

Luke Perry's death comes just weeks after legendary Arizona basketball coach Lute Olson was hospitalized with a stroke.

Doctors say strokes occur more often in older people like 84-year-old Olson but can affect people as young or younger than Luke Perry.

“Strokes can affect any age group. It can happen in kids, adults, and older patients,” said stroke neurologist Mohammad el Ghanem, a stroke neurologist at Banner University Medical Center.

Perry died from his stroke. Olson, however, is in recovery, which Ghanem says is different for each patient.

“It's multi-disciplinary type of work. Between physical therapy physicians, primary doctors, and stroke doctors.”

Doctor el Ghanem says stroke symptoms appear very quickly and that, sometimes they're hard to diagnose, even for medical professionals.

“Stroke symptoms are complex but the easiest way to spot a stroke is to remember the acronym ‘be fast.’ B-e-f-a-s-t,” said Ghanem. It stands for:

B-balance problem

E-eye problems

F-facial droop

A-arm weakness

S-speech problems


Telephone is the most important part of the acronym. It means calling 9-1-1 and getting treatment quickly, which is the key to surviving a stroke.
“Every minute you are we have a delay in treatment, there are two million nuerons or 2 million brain cells that die, if there's no treatment,” said Ghanem.

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