Stroke Association: Charity backs former Grangemouth man's family as they push to raise awareness of all symptoms of stroke

A family’s fight to raise awareness about symptoms of stroke has received the backing of a major charity.
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The Stroke Association has given its backing to a parliamentary petition which calls on the Scottish Government to conduct a review of the FAST stroke campaign in the hope of saving lives by increasing awareness of all symptoms of a potential stroke.

The petition was launched by the Bundy family following the sudden death of 53-year-old Tony Bundy in June last year.

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When Tony’s stroke occurred, his initial symptoms were outwith the FAST (Face, Arms, Speech, Time) test.

Councillor James Bundy and his father Tony. Picture: ContributedCouncillor James Bundy and his father Tony. Picture: Contributed
Councillor James Bundy and his father Tony. Picture: Contributed

Due to this, he was left in an A&E corridor for over five hours before his fatal stroke struck.

Tony, who live and brought up his family in Grangemouth for many years, passed away four days later.

Since launching the petition, a briefing has highlighted that “a 2021 systematic review of evidence found that the FAST test accurately detected 69-90 per cent of strokes. However, the review noted that the FAST test missed up to 40 per cent of posterior circulation strokes, such as the basilar artery ischaemic stroke experienced by Tony Bundy.”

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The briefing note continues by saying “posterior strokes affect the blood flow at the back of the brain, and account for 20- 25 per cent of all acute strokes”.

It also determined that the FAST test, on average, would have missed between 900 and 1125 strokes in Scotland in 2022 – as many as three a day.

In its submission to Citizens Participation and Public Petitions Committee, the Stroke Association applauded “the admirable work the (Bundy) family have been doing to increase awareness of stroke, and to raise funds to support those affected by stroke, since this tragedy occurred”.

And in their conclusion, the Stroke Association confirmed that they “do strongly support the idea of further committee scrutiny of how we can improve early diagnosis and treatment of stroke”, which is what the Bundy family are calling for in their petition.

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In response, Tony’s son, James Bundy – who also serves as a Scottish Conservative Councillor on Falkirk Council – said: “I am pleased to hear that the Stroke Association has backed my family’s calls for further research into the stroke public health awareness campaign in the hope of improving early diagnosis and treatment of stroke.

“One reason why FAST is currently used is because stroke is a medical emergency, and it is a reminder that ‘fast’ treatment is needed.

“The cruel irony of my dad’s story, however, is that the reliance of FAST resulted in my dad being prevented ‘fast’ treatment, and the submission from the Stroke Association, and evidence gathered, confirm that my dad will not be the only person failed by the reliance on FAST.

“FAST has undoubtedly saved lives but it is not infallible. As we know it falls short, it is vitally important that a review is conducted to see if FAST can be upgraded to become more effective.

“I thank the Stroke Association for their support, and I hope that it will encourage theScottish Parliament and Scottish Government to urgently conduct a review. It could save lives.”