Just under half of the UK's older population would struggle to recognise symptoms of a stroke and would not know how to act, a survey reveals.
Research commissioned by the Stroke Association has found that just over half of over 65s would call the emergency services if they witnessed symptoms of a stroke.
This is less than any other age group questioned in the survey, despite being the most at risk group.
Joe Korner, director of communication at the Stroke Association, said: "The results of this survey are very concerning. A stroke is a brain attack which strikes without warning, it can kill, leave you paralysed, unable to speak or blind.
"It is vital that people of all ages are able to correctly identify the warning signs of a stroke and this can be done using the FAST test."
The survey also revealed that less than two thirds of 65s could identify a stroke as resulting from a blocked blood vessel or bleeding in the brain.
Mr Korner concludes: "Of all people that have a stroke, about a third are likely to die within the first ten days, about a third are likely to make a recovery within one month and about a third are likely to be left with disabilities and needing rehabilitation.
"However, this rule of thirds could and should be broken is stroke is treated as a medical emergency."