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Hello fellow warriors. Thank you for allowing me to participate in this group. I am an active 62 year old with a great life and an amazing significant other. I have always been healthy with the exception of high blood pressure (not always well controlled) but otherwise healthy. The early evening of July 26, 2021 changed my world. Suddenly, my face had a strange, numb feeling. Then my right hand started tingling. I instantly thought, "stroke." But nah, that couldn't be. The feeling subsided momentarily and then it returned but this time my entire right side went numb. My arm dropped lifelessly to my side. I said "call 911" as best I could with a slurred voice.
 
Within 15 minutes I was in the emergency room where they began diagnosing my condition. The right side paralysis and slurred speech began waxing and waning, occurring about once every half hour with a few minutes between episodes, which I refer to as seizures. I was diagnosed with an ischemic stroke and was administered tPA, then admitted to the ICU. The seizures continued for 2 days, with each one leaving me in worse condition than before. My right arm had no movement at all. I could barely move my right foot and speech was very difficult. I recall the doctor saying "we've done all we can." I called my partner to my side and we recorded my end-of-life instructions.
 
Sometime between the 2nd and 3rd day in ICU, the seizures subsided and I began to recover some movement in my leg and arm. My speech was slightly better. I immediately began doing anything I could to rehabilitate my leg and arm. At first there wasn't much movement. During physical therapy my right hand was useless. Although I could stand on my right leg, I was unable to lift it off the ground to take a step. I was moved to the neurology wing of the hospital on the 4th day where I continued doing anything I could to regain use of my right side. I began to notice encouraging signs of improvement in my speech, leg and hand.
 
Fortunately, there was an opening in the hospital's inpatient rehab facility. I was told I would be admitted to rehab for 2 to 4 weeks. My story takes a wonderful turn at this point. Once in the rehab facility, I noticed that my sensation and movement were quickly returning. My speech improved to weak but near normal. After 2 days in rehab, I passed all the balance, mobility and self-care tests and I was discharged to return home.
 
Since my return home I have diligently worked to recover my movement, especially fine motor skills. I have hiked and taken up running again (from my high school cross country days), I play racquetball, lift weights and been even more active than I was before. I am pretty nearly 100% physically recovered from the stroke. Nobody would look at me now and think I had a stroke a few months ago. Yet, I still have the less obvious remnants. There are times when the room starts spinning. Sometimes I have difficulty finding the right words. Like many others, I have anxiety and the fear of another stroke. I'm making progress on the mental and emotional fallout from the stroke. 
 
According to my doctor, my recovery is a combination of luck, based on the part of my brain that was affected, fast emergency response, tPA and my overall activity level before and after the stroke. I'm doing my best to make the best of my second chance. Thank you for being here for me. I wish you the very best for a successful recovery and happiness in the next chapters of your life.
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Loni, You've  done remarkably well on your stroke recovery journey.  KEEP IT UP-IT'S WORKING! jUST REMEMBER TO STOP if you feel vrry tired or sore. Stroke effects have a way of sneaking up on you. Be vigilant about what your body is saying  to you, You're doing so well,though. Becky

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Brilliant effort Loni, sometime after a stroke the realisation comes that you, yourself, are the only one who can find the effort to make a recovery. This came early to you and you have obviously made the most of the situation. Hope to hear from you again.

Deigh

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  • 2 weeks later...

Hi Loni, nice to meet you. Glad you are getting on top of your physical deficits early. Thank goodness TPA makes that possible. But as others have said watch out for the more subtle clues your body/brain will be giving you. Its the mantra of all the physios that we all hate to hear. "Make haste a little more slowly"  Even with TPA and minimised brain damage you brain took a hit and will need time to physically repair and while it's doing that all sorts of unexpected stuff can trip you up if you aren't paying attention to the signals. Rest is as much a part of recovery as hard work, although finding the balance can be tricky.

 

All the best

Heather

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Thank you all for the warm welcome and helpful advice.  🙂

 

I look forward to sharing and offering help or support as I can. Wishing everyone a happy and healthy new year. 

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