Primary Stroke Center


Advanced Care When Minutes Matter

University Medical Center is an Advanced Primary Stroke Center with a full stroke team on call 24/7 to immediately care for patients with stroke symptoms.  Strokes affect over 795,000 people each year and is the #1 cause of severe disability throughout the United States.

Stroke is the fifth leading cause of death in the United States behind heart disease and cancer. Stroke is a time sensitive illness that must be treated expeditiously.

University Medical Center Stroke Program earned The Joint Commission’s designation as a Nationally Certified Primary Stroke Center in 2010. Our Stroke Team is dedicated to offering outstanding stroke care to this region. Because we are an accredited Primary Stroke Center, New Orleans area patients receive hospital services that meet rigorous national standards for stroke care and have the critical components needed for long-term success in improving outcomes. 

Stroke Program Features

  • Dedicated (25) bed Stroke Unit.
  • Multidisciplinary Stroke Team including neurologists, nurses, radiologists, case managers, dietitians,  pharmacists, therapists (physical, respiratory, occupational and speech), and an interventional neuroradiologist. 
  • 75% of our patients received the clot-busting stroke drug tPA, a life-saving medicine, in less than 60 minutes, which exceeds The Joint Commissions requirement. 
  • Our Stroke Team meets or exceeds all national time standards for door-to-Emergency Department physician, Neurology Services, tPA administration and CT Scan completion.
  • Our Stroke Team reaches out to the community with education to help fight the prevalence of strokes.
  • Comprehensive follow-up in stroke care.

Get With The Guidelines-Silver Plus Stroke Honor Roll Elite

The American Heart Association/American Stroke Association award recognizes the hospital’s commitment and success ensuring that stroke patients receive the most appropriate treatment according to nationally recognized, research-based guidelines based on the latest scientific evidence.

Learn more

Different Strokes Support Group

Encouraging survivors and their loved ones to share their stories and support one another. For more information on this support group, call (504) 702-5019
Download the Brochure.

How much do you know about stroke? 
Take our quiz.

What is Stroke?

Stroke, also called brain attack, occurs when blood flow to the brain is disrupted. Disruption in blood flow is caused when either a blood clot blocks one of the vital blood vessels in the brain (ischemic stroke), or when a blood vessel in the brain bursts, spilling blood into surrounding tissues (hemorrhagic stroke).


The brain needs a constant supply of oxygen and nutrients in order to function. Even a brief interruption in blood supply can cause problems. Brain cells begin to die after just a few minutes without blood or oxygen. The area of dead cells in tissues is called an infarct. Due to both the physical and chemical changes that occur in the brain with stroke, damage can continue to occur for several days. This is called a stroke-in-evolution.

Learn more in our Health Library.


Stroke Warning Signs (Act FAST)

F – Face drooping. One side of face droops or is numb. Ask person to smile.

A – Arm weakness. One arm weak or numb.

S – Speech difficulty. Is speech hard to understand or is person unable to speak?

T – Time to call 911. If person has any of these symptoms, even if they go away, it is time to call 911.

Watch this fun music video from the American Heart Association, featuring Hip Hop Artist Dee-1 and Tha Hip Hop Doc Rani Whitfield, M.D., to help you remember the warning signs of stroke:

Our Partners


The Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center New Orleans has teaching, research, and health care functions state-wide, through its six professional schools and twelve Centers of Excellence, as well as the more than one hundred hospitals and other health science related institutions with which they maintain affiliations.


The second-oldest medical school in the Deep South and the 15th oldest medical school in the United States, Tulane School of Medicine is equipping the next generation of medical professionals with the tools to succeed in a rapidly changing world and shape the future of health care.