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New Program Educates About Serious Warning Sign for Stroke

One in 20 People Who Experience a TIA Are Expected to Suffer a Stroke Within Two Days1

Ridgefield, CT - April 17, 2009 /PRNewswire/ — National Stroke Association and Boehringer Ingelheim Pharmaceuticals, Inc. today announced the launch of Talk About TIA!, a new educational initiative to raise awareness of an under-recognized but serious health risk – transient ischemic attack (TIA). TIA is an important warning sign that a stroke may occur. In fact, one in 20 people who experience a TIA are expected to suffer a stroke within two days.1 Talk About TIA! is the first comprehensive and interactive online resource for people to learn about TIA, the link between TIA and stroke, and how to help reduce the risk of stroke following a TIA.

"Suffering a TIA is one of the most significant warnings that a stroke may occur, and knowing about TIA can be crucial to help reduce your risk of suffering a stroke," said James Baranski, CEO, National Stroke Association. "TalkAboutTIA.com is a much-needed resource that can help millions become more familiar with this important health warning and encourage them to take action and call 911 immediately if they've experienced a TIA. Steps like these can help reduce their risk of suffering a potentially devastating stroke."

TIA affects more than 240,000 Americans every year, but many don't realize they've had one.2 TIAs can be difficult to recognize and are often dismissed as minor, temporary discomforts because they happen quickly and last less than a day3 – in fact, most last less than five minutes.4 Approximately half of those who experience a TIA fail to report it to their health care providers, and although studies may vary, up to 20 percent will suffer a stroke within 90 days,1 with the highest risk within the first 30 days following the TIA.1 Symptoms of TIA are similar to those of stroke but are less severe and generally do not cause permanent brain injury.3 Suffering a stroke, however, does have lasting effects. Stroke is the leading cause of chronic adult disability in the United States – nearly 70 percent of stroke survivors will be left with some type of disability, which may include paralysis, vision problems, speech or language problems and memory loss.5

"I know how important it is to treat TIA to help avoid a future stroke," said TIA patient Charlie Harris, 62. "Being unaware of the symptoms can mean a TIA goes unnoticed and untreated, increasing the risk of a potentially devastating stroke. TalkAboutTIA.com is a great way to learn and share important health information with those you care about to ensure they have the knowledge I wish I had before suffering my TIA."

The Talk About TIA! Web site, www.TalkAboutTIA.com, provides information and interactive resources for people to learn more about TIA. Features include descriptions of common risk factors, interactive body symptoms map, and downloadable checklists to aid discussions with physicians about how to reduce the risk of stroke, including lifestyle changes and medical treatment when necessary. The site also includes personal stories from TIA survivors and e-postcards that visitors to the site can send to share what they learn about TIA and encourage those who may be at risk to speak with their doctors.

About Transient Ischemic Attack (TIA)

A transient ischemic attack (TIA) occurs when blood flow to the brain is temporarily obstructed, producing stroke-like symptoms that last less than a day,3 and typically less than five minutes.4 TIAs generally do not cause permanent brain damage, and while some produce no outwardly recognizable symptoms at all,3 common symptoms include sudden numbness or weakness of the face, arm or leg, especially on one side of the body; sudden trouble seeing in one or both eyes; sudden confusion, trouble speaking or understanding; sudden difficulty walking, dizziness, loss of balance or coordination; and sudden, severe headache with no known cause.3 Although studies may vary, up to 20 percent of people who have a TIA will experience a stroke within 90 days,3 making proper risk reduction and treatment critically important. More than one-third of those who suffer a TIA are expected to eventually suffer a stroke.3

About Stroke

Stroke is the third-leading cause of death and the leading cause of chronic adult disability in the United States.3 There are approximately 5.8 million stroke survivors in the United States,1 and nearly 70 percent of them are left with some type of disability, which may include paralysis, vision problems, speech or language problems and memory loss.5 Although studies may vary, up to 20 percent of people who have a TIA will experience a stroke within 90 days,3 making proper risk reduction and treatment critically important.

About National Stroke Association

National Stroke Association is the leading national non-profit organization devoting all its efforts and resources to stroke. National Stroke Association provides the most up-to-date information on prevention, treatment, rehabilitation and support for stroke survivors and their families. For more information on National Stroke Association and its programs please contact 1-800-STROKES or visit http://www.stroke.org.

Boehringer Ingelheim Pharmaceuticals, Inc.

Boehringer Ingelheim Pharmaceuticals, Inc., based in Ridgefield, CT, is the largest U.S. subsidiary of Boehringer Ingelheim Corporation (Ridgefield, CT) and a member of the Boehringer Ingelheim group of companies.

The Boehringer Ingelheim group is one of the world's 20 leading pharmaceutical companies. Headquartered in Ingelheim, Germany, it operates globally with 135 affiliates in 47 countries and approximately 39,800 employees. Since it was founded in 1885, the family-owned company has been committed to researching, developing, manufacturing and marketing novel products of high therapeutic value for human and veterinary medicine.

In 2007, Boehringer Ingelheim posted net sales of US $15.0 billion (10.9 billion euro) while spending approximately one-fifth of net sales in its largest business segment, Prescription Medicines, on research and development.

For more information, please visit http://us.boehringer-ingelheim.com.


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Contact:

Anna Moses
Public Relations
Boehringer Ingelheim Pharmaceuticals, Inc.
Phone: (203) 798-4638

References:

1American Heart Association. Heart Disease and Stroke Statistics – 2008 Update. Found at: http://www.circ.ahajournals.org/cgi/reprint/CIRCULATIONAHA.107.187998v1
2National Stroke Association Guidelines for the Management of TIA. National Stroke Association. 2006. Found at: http://www.stroke.org/site/DocServer/TIA_Guidelines_070506_sm.pdf?docID=2361
3National Stroke Association, Transient Ischemic Attack Prevention Brochure, 2008. Found at: http://www.stroke.org/site/DocServer/TIA.pdf?docID=405
4American Heart Association/American Stroke Association. Transient Ischemic Attack, 2008. Found at: http://www.americanheart.org/presenter.jhtml?identifier=4781
5National Stroke Association, What is Stroke? 2008. Found at: http://www.stroke.org/site/PageServer?pagename=STROKE