UMC Mobile Stroke Unit
With strokes, Seconds Count

During a stroke vast numbers of neurons, synapses, and nerve fibers are irreversibly lost every second that treatment doesn’t occur.

If you think you are having a stroke

Call 911

Encompassing 16-Slice OmniTom Scanner

16-Slice Scan

First in the world encompassing a 16-slice OmniTom scanner while other existing MSUs only have 8 slice scanners.

Onboard Lab

Test blood and transmit samples direct to neurologists – who can direct onboard treatment.

Tele-medicine

Advanced onboard telemedicine gives doctors live access to patients in route to the hospital

Rapid Response

Administering fast diagnoses and medication on scene offers patients better short-term and long-term outcomes.

Minutes Matter

Every minute in which a stroke is untreated, the patient loses 1.9 million neurons, 13.8 billion synapses, and 7 miles of axonal fibers…

World’s Most Advanced Stroke Care

The UMC Mobile Stroke Unit is the first of its kind – providing El Paso the most advanced stroke treatment found anywhere in the world.

Saving Time Saves Lives

UMC’s Mobile Stroke Unit saves time and lives by bringing stroke treatment direct to the patient.
UMC MsU

UMC's Mobile Stroke Unit

The UMC Mobile Stroke Unit may look like an ambulance on the outside, but inside it contains specialized equipment, staff, and medications specifically tailored to the diagnosis and treatment of a strokes.

What to Know

About Stroke

A stroke occurs when a blood vessel that carries oxygen and nutrients to the brain is either blocked (by a clot) or ruptures. When that happens, parts of the brain cannot get oxygen, and the brain and brain cells begin to die. A stroke is a serious medical emergency requiring immediate treatment. Early action is essential to reducing brain damage and other serious complications.

Seconds Count

B.E. F.A.S.T.

UMC’s Mobile Stroke Unit is dedicated to fighting the effect of strokes in El Paso and part of the fight is educating El Paso about the signs of stroke. Even though strokes are the third leading cause of death in the United States, few people know the signs. Use the acronym BE FAST to remember the signs, and what to do if someone near you is experiencing them.

What to Know

In-Time Treatment

With strokes, every second counts. Vast numbers of neurons, synapses, and nerve fibers are irreversibly lost every second that treatment doesn’t occur. Doctors use a medication called tPA that dissolves blood clots in stroke patients. It increases recovery from stroke symptoms by up to 50 percent – but works best when given right away.

On a national scale, only 3 to 8.5 percent of potentially eligible patients receive tPA in time. The UMC Mobile Stroke Unit aims to change that, by bringing diagnosis and medications directly to the patient.

360 View

Click and drag to take a look inside El Paso's only Mobile Stroke Unit.

Mobile Stroke Unit in Action

Find out more about El Paso’s only Mobile Stroke Unit.

Meet the Team

The UMC Mobile Stroke Team is comprised of a dedicated CT tech, critical care nurse, paramedic, and an EMS driver. This team is integrated into the 9-1-1 dispatch system, so if a dispatcher believes the patient is experiencing stroke-like symptoms, the UMC Mobile Stroke Team can be immediately dispatched to the scene.

CT Tech

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Critical Care Nurse

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Paramedic

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EMS Driver

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Frequently Asked Questions

Learn more about strokes and receiving the best medical treatment.

What should I do if I think someone is having a stroke?

If someone is having a stroke it’s important to remain calm – but act quickly.
You should call 9-1-1 immediately. The more time that passes, the more likely that further damage to the brain will occur. Even if a person appears to be “be ok” do not hesitate to call for help. Brain damage can continue to occur for hours after a stroke, so the sooner a stroke victim receives treatment, the better.

Are there different types of stroke?

There are two core categories of stroke. An ischemic stroke is one that is caused by an artery or blood vessel that is blocked by a blood clot. Approximately 80% of strokes are ischemic. A Hemorrhagic Stroke is when a blood vessel or artery bursts and leaks into the brain. Approximately 20% of strokes are hemorrhagic.

Am I at risk for a stroke?

Smoking, obesity, diabetes, and high blood pressure all can significantly increase your risk of stroke. The risk of stroke increases with age, people 70 and older are at the greatest risk. Although strokes are possible in people of all ages.

What are the symptoms of a stroke?

- Sudden intense headache sudden numbness or weakness on one side of the body (face, arm, or leg)

- Sudden confusion, trouble speaking, or understanding.

- Sudden trouble seeing or loss of vision.

- Sudden difficulty walking, dizziness, or imbalance.

The symptoms may be mild or severe and occur together or individually.

What causes a stroke?

A stroke can occur suddenly and result in loss of blood flow to the brain or bleeding into the brain. that causes cells to die. Because injury that cell death causes to the brain progresses over time, it is vital to seek help immediately if someone you know is having a stroke.

How do I access the Mobile Stroke Unit?

If you think you (or someone around you) is having a stroke – CALL 9-1-1.
The UMC team is integrated into the emergency dispatch system, so if a dispatcher believes the patient is experiencing stroke-like symptoms, the UMC Mobile Stroke Team can be immediately dispatched to the scene… Minimizing time before treatment – and minimizing the horrific long term effects of a stroke.

What are the side effects of a stroke?

According to the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association, stroke is the No. 5 cause of death and a leading cause of adult disability in the United States. They can result in paralysis, sensory impairment, memory problems, cognitive degradation, and/or behavioral changes.

How does UMC Mobile Stroke Unit help?

The combination of rapid scan time, immediate imaging, and onboard treatment - makes this unit a vital tool in treating El Paso stroke victims in time.

Are strokes common in El Paso?

Every year over 1,400 people in El Paso suffer a stroke.