The recent death of the former “Beverly Hills, 90210” star Luke Perry has struck a chord with many men and women who grew up a fan of the teen star. Generation X grew up adoring him and now face his loss, stunned. Not only because of the death of someone they idolized but because it shines a light on something that could strike at any of us. At the age of 52, not much older than the fans who faithfully watched his show, Perry died of a massive stroke.
According to the Center for Disease Control and Protection (CDC), stroke is the fifth leading cause of death in the United States, claiming approximately 140,000 lives every year. Every 40 seconds, somebody in the U.S. has a stroke, and every 4 minutes, someone dies of a stroke. Each year, over 795,000 individuals in the U.S. experience a stroke. Of those 795,000, around 610,000 of them are first-time strokes.
Approximately every 1 in 4 stokes in the US are in individuals who have previously had one. Strokes can strike at any age, however, nearly 3-quarters of strokes happen in individuals 65 and over.