The Impressive Walk Across America & The Get Off The Couch Campaign

For an ordinary individual would be a “once-in-a-lifetime” or maybe an “are-you-kidding-I-could-never-do-that” event. The fact that the man doing it has survived four strokes makes it that much more impressive.

In order to raise awareness for symptoms of stroke, Mycle Brandy has ¬†walked across America – last year. Now he’s walking from San Diego to Seattle as part of his “Get Off the Couch” campaign to raise awareness for the US National Stroke Association and the OC Stroke Association. In his travels, he also talks to stroke patients and encourages them while they recover – he’s a wonderful example of what your life could be post-stroke.

Brandy is now 60 years old, and suffered his first stroke in 1988 – when there effectively wasn’t a program available for stroke survivors (most of the developments in stroke therapy have happened in the last handful of years). He crushed his foot in a construction accident in July of 1988, and he was put in a walking cast and returned to work the next day.¬†He noticed some ringing in his ears when he returned to work, and after another check with an ear doctor was given antibiotics for the tinnitus. The drugs didn’t solve the problem, and after a few more days – when things had gotten even worse – he saw another doctor. The new doctor gave him different antibiotics and ordered a MRI. Brandy postponed the MRI, but finally gave in and had one.

What was revealed was that he had a full blown, major stroke. Had he known the signs earlier, a diagnosis could have come much quicker. That’s what his agenda is now – teaching people what the symptoms of a stroke are. There is a quick, easy way to recognize most strokes – and that is what Brandy is teaching. If you are not familiar with FAST, get with the program!!

F- Face – Try to smile – if your face droops (mouth, eye) get help!

A- Arms – Hold both arms out, palms up, in front of you. If one starts to fall by itself, get help!

S – Speech – Say a relatively complicated sentence. Can you repeat it verbatim, or do you mix words up, or slur your speech? If you do – get help!

T- Time – Time is brain cells. If any of the three above are suspect, call 911 now!

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