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Here are some facts about stroke you might not know.

A stroke is a brain attack or cerebrovascular accident (CVA).

It’s a sudden interruption of blood flow to part of the brain causing it to stop working and eventually damaging brain cells. The effects can be fatal or cause devastating long-term disability.

Stroke is the second largest killer* in New Zealand.

Every year around 2500 people die after having a stroke.

* “Stroke was the second leading cause of death in 2012, after ischaemic heart disease” – Ministry of Health, Annual Update of Key Results 2015/16

Stroke strikes around 24 New Zealanders each day – young and old.

6 of those are under 65 and around 40 children die each year because of a stroke.

Strokes are largely preventable.

There is a lot you can do to significantly lower the chance of having a stroke.

High blood pressure is the major cause of stroke.

A person with high blood pressure is seven times more likely to have a stroke than someone with normal blood pressure.