Ocala Health March 01, 2019

Ocala, FL — Ocala Regional Medical Center now offers a higher level of care for complex stroke cases and becomes the first and only Comprehensive Stroke Center in Marion County.

Why Is This Important?

By achieving Comprehensive Stroke Center status, Ocala Regional is now providing more advanced stroke treatments than primary stroke centers located in Marion, Lake and Sumter Counties. Scientific evidence shows that when a stroke, or also called brain attack occurs, immediate assessment and treatment will reduce the effects of stroke and lessen the chances of a permanent disability. In fact, when suspecting a stroke, the American Heart and Stroke Association guidelines recommend to travel farther to a Comprehensive Stroke Center if it is within a 15 to 20 minute drive and bypass other hospitals or Primary Stroke Center.

With the opening of the new Comprehensive Stroke Center, patients suffering from all types of strokes to include severe stroke cases such as large brain clots and hemorrhages, can now receive immediate care closer to home.

Comprehensive Stroke Center

With 24/7 access to minimally invasive stroke procedures, on-site neurosurgeons, and dedicated Neuroscience Intensive Care Beds, the hospital's new Comprehensive Stroke Center is staffed with a specially trained team of neurointerventionalists, neurologists, neurosurgeons and healthcare professionals with 24/7 coverage. Dr. Iraj Nikfarjam, Neurointerventionalist leads the program and advanced technologies such as Biplane Angiography which produces three-dimensional views of the brain to help diagnose and treat complex strokes.

"My goal is provide outstanding care to stroke and brain hemorrhage patients while bringing world-class treatment to Ocala and surrounding communities", said Dr. Nikfarjam.

Ocala Regional Medical Center's CEO, Chad Christianson mentioned how the hospital's multiple expansions and additions have extended the hospital's commitment to providing advanced healthcare services to our community. "As a hospital with Comprehensive Stroke Care, we can seamlessly provide treatment to patients whose conditions require a higher level of stroke treatment expertise. We're proud to be able to offer this service to our community."

Learn the Stats

According the American Heart and Stroke Association, stroke is the number 5 cause of death in the nation, accounting for approximately 795,000 strokes each year and is the leading cause of serious long-term disability. On average, someone has a stroke every 40 seconds in the US and every 4 minutes, someone dies of a stroke.

Locally, Ocala Regional continues to see sicker patients in our community and reported they treated nearly 900 stroke patients in 2018.

Signs of Stroke

In an effort to educate the community, the hospital urges the community to BEFAST, know the signs of stroke and call 911 immediately.

B - Balance: Are you dizzy or having trouble with your balance?

E- Eyes: Do you have a change or loss in vision?

F - Face Drooping: Does one side of the face droop or is it numb? Ask the person to smile.

A - Arm Weakness: Is one arm weak or numb? Ask the person to raise both arms.

S - Speech Difficulty: Is speech slurred, unable to speak or hard to understand.

T - Time to call 911: If showing any symptoms, even if symptoms go away, call 9-1-1 immediately.

For more information, please call (352) 401-1300.