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Real stories 

Alan Corbett, 70

Alan felt unwell before bed, and struggled to sleep through the night. The following morning he experienced weakness in his arms and difficulty walking and talking, but it was not until he looked in the mirror that he realised his face was fallen on the left hand side.

Luckily Alan had seen the Act F.A.S.T. advertisement, recognised the signs and thought he was having a stroke. Alan's wife quickly rang for an ambulance and he was taken to hospital.

"If I hadn't seen the Act F.A.S.T. advert I would not have known to call an ambulance. As a result of dialing 999 so quickly, the specialist stroke unit was waiting and able to treat me immediately on arrival. I'm glad to say, I've made an almost complete recovery!"

Sas Freeman, 52

Sas had two strokes in six months. Sas didn't call 999 on her first stroke, and waited for a GP appointment. As a result of waiting, she suffered lasting effects to her mobility, independence and speech.

Sas' second stroke was quickly spotted by her carer who quickly called 999, and as a result the stroke left no lasting damage.

"I wish I'd known to call 999 quicker when I had my first stroke, as I know my recovery and rehabilitation would have been better. I am so thankful that my carer knew to act so quickly on my second stroke, and probably saved by life."

Carolyn McCartney, 57

One morning Carolyn felt a pain in her head and then the feeling started to go in the right side of her body. She recognised the symptoms of her stroke almost immediately, and informed her brother who quickly called an ambulance.

She was rushed to Eastbourne specialist stroke unit, where a bleed on her brain was diagnosed. Carolyn's life was saved, and it was due to the speed in which her brother made the 999 call and the rapid response of the ambulance.

"There's no doubt in my mind that I would not be here today if it wasn't for the fact my brother acted F.A.S.T. I was discharged from hospital after just eight days, and have made a complete recovery."

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