Stroke specialists in Ocala, Florida

Every second matters during a stroke. Stroke is a leading cause of death in the U.S., and every second without treatment during a stroke increases the risk for brain damage, disability or death.

At Ocala Regional Medical Center, our neurological experts provide the rapid, life-saving stroke treatment needed to reduce—or even prevent—loss of function. Our hospital features dedicated neuroscience intensive care units, advanced technologies and 24/7 access to minimally invasive stroke procedures.

If you believe someone is experiencing a stroke, call 911 immediately.

For more information about stroke treatment or recovery, call our Consult-A-Nurse® team at (800) 530-1188.

What is a stroke?

A stroke occurs when part of the blood flow to the brain is suddenly blocked by a clot (ischemic stroke) or when a blood vessel in the brain bursts (hemorrhagic stroke).

Ischemic strokes make up about 85 percent of all strokes. When its blood flow is obstructed, the brain cannot receive oxygen and vital nutrients. This causes brain cells to die and can result in brain damage, which is why rapid, expert stroke treatment is so important.

Nationally recognized stroke care program

Ocala Regional Medical Center has been designated a Comprehensive Stroke Center by both the Florida Agency for Health Care Administration (FAHCA) and by DNV GL Healthcare, a leading accreditation organization for U.S. hospitals.

As the first and only Comprehensive Stroke Center in Marion County, Ocala Regional Medical Center provides more advanced stroke treatments than the primary stroke centers located in Marion, Lake and Sumter counties. This means that even in complex stroke cases, such as large brain clots and hemorrhages, patients in our region can now receive immediate, expert stroke care closer to home.

The DNV GL Healthcare Comprehensive Stroke Center certification is based on standards set forth by the Brain Attack Coalition and the American Stroke Association. This distinction is given to facilities which offer a full spectrum of stroke care—diagnosis, treatment, rehabilitation and education.

The Joint Commission designated us a Primary Stroke Center for our dedication to stringent, proven guidelines leading to improved outcomes and higher quality of life for patients experiencing a stroke.

Our stroke care team

We use a team-based approach to our comprehensive stroke care. We offer 24/7 neurology, neurosurgery and interventional radiology coverage to treat patients experiencing strokes. Our stroke care team consists of:

  • Case managers
  • Neurological care nurses
  • Neurointerventionalists
  • Neurologists
  • Neurosurgeons
  • Nurse practitioners
  • Pharmacists
  • Therapists

Signs of stroke

Learning the warning signs of a stroke—how to BE FAST—could save your life or the life of a loved one.

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Spot the signs of a stroke FAST

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

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

Face drooping - Does one side of the face droop or is it numb?

Arm weakness - Is one arm weak or numb? Ask the person to raise both arms. Does one arm drift downward?

Speech difficulty - Is speech slurred, is he or she unable to speak or hard to understand? Ask the person to repeat a simple sentence. Is the sentence repeated correctly?

Time to call 9-1-1 - If the person shows any of these symptoms, even if the symptoms go away, call 9-1-1 and get him or her to the hospital immediately.

Call 9-1-1 - Immediate medical treatment can save lives, but more than 1/3 of acute stroke patients don't take an ambulance to the hospital.

Call 911 if you notice one or more of these sudden signs:

  • Confusion
  • Difficulty seeing in one or both eyes
  • Difficulty speaking or understanding
  • Dizziness, trouble walking or loss of balance or coordination
  • Numbness or weakness of the face, arm or leg—especially on one side of the body
  • Severe headache with no known cause

Specialized stroke treatment

Our expert stroke care begins with communication and coordination with emergency medical services (EMS) team before the ambulance arrives to one of our five emergency room locations.

Once the patient arrives, our rapid response stroke specialists evaluate and treat her or him using extensive, standardized guidelines.

The evaluation may include various diagnostic imaging services including a computed tomography scan of the head, a magnetic resonance imaging scan of the brain or biplane angiography, which produces 3D images of the brain.

Our team quickly analyzes the results and then provides any necessary treatment, including administering thrombolytic (clot-dissolving) medication. In complex cases, our specialists and surgeons perform interventional procedures to restore brain blood flow.

Stroke rehabilitation

Our licensed therapists provide neurological rehabilitation techniques to help you regain your strength and abilities following a stroke. Stroke rehabilitation improves long-term outcomes and decreases stroke-related complications.