Stephen O.


Middle of the night awakening

On December 5th 2011 I went to bed at my normal 10 p.m. for the night. At 2:45 a.m. I woke feeling the need to go to the bathroom. My wife woke up after noticing I woke up. I was able to stand and go into the bathroom but my wife noticed a strong slurring in my voice and asked how I felt. I felt very unstable and barely made it back to bed only 10-12 feet away. My wife noticed a marked twist in my face and said she thought I might have had a stroke. I tried getting out of bed again but fell to the floor unable to stand. My wife at this point said she was calling 911 as I insisted I was ok but she knew better. By the time I arrived at the hospital my whole left side seemed as it was not there as I had no feeling or movement on my left side. I had a CT scan immediately which confirmed my having a stroke on the right side due to a totally blocked carotid artery.

Later in the day the doctors told my wife and children that I may never get movement or feeling back on my left side. I was having none of this prognosis being a very stubborn man. Within 48 hours I regained movement in both left limbs and was sent to rehab on the 9th of December. I spent 19 days in rehab with at least 3 hours of therapy daily and regained all strength but not sensory feeling to hot/cold in both my left arm and leg. I came home using a walker surprising everyone with my rapid progression especially the doctors.

It is now 2 months later and I barely use a cane anymore for walking, have restored 90% of my strength and lost almost 20 pounds.

I'm forever grateful to my wife for acting quickly despite my protest. The doctors said that hadn't she recognized the symptons and not called 911 I probably would not have survived that night to see the next morning. I can't stress enough the importance of everyone being aware of the symptoms of a stroke and acting immediately when recognized despite the protests of the victim. My pcp has said that he is very impressed with my progress and continued improvement and will not be surprised if I regain the sensory feeling in my limbs in the months ahead. I am back to exercising on my recumbent bike 30 minutes a day 5 days a week and feeling good about it.


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