n: A sudden disabling attack or loss of consciousness caused by an interruption in the flow of blood to the brain, especially through thrombosis.
A line from the Book of Ecclesiastes (3:1-11) that I included in yesterday’s post has been a recurring thought for me for the last week-plus:
There is an appointed time for everything,
and a time for every thing under the heavens.
Just over a week ago, while visiting in Canada with my mother she had a stroke, and I was standing just three feet away from her. It all happened in the blink of an eye. Luckily, I recognized the signs right away and had my aunt dial 911. Mom was in the hospital having a clot removed from her brain within an hour. That is how quickly things moved.
I think it is important at this point to emphasize how important it was that I noticed the signs right away. Luckily, less than a week later Mom was back home, a new stent in her carotid artery, a little tired and weak but fully able to talk and walk.
The reason I share this with you all is that I think it’s important to be well versed in some of the classic signs of stroke because it can happen to anyone at any age.
If you have watched the above video, it describes pretty much what happens. The person experiencing the stroke is aware but cannot communicate what is happening. The doctors told me that it is important to get medical attention within four to six hours. A drug called tPA can help re-open blocked arteries if that is the cause of the stroke. Mom had a CT scan and a large clot was discovered. She was quickly whisked off for surgery and it was retrieved through her femoral artery. A few days later she had a carotid stent put in.
Some common risk factors for stroke are:
• High blood pressure
• Irregular heartbeat (such as atrial fibrillation)
• Lifestyle — Lack of exercise, unhealthy diet, unhealthy weight, excessive alcohol use
• High cholesterol (lipids)
• Sleep apnea
• Hormone replacement therapy
Spotting the signs and acting fast might mean the difference between life and death. It could mean the difference between a full recovery and lasting disability. Remember FAST, which stands for: Face – is it drooping? Arms – can you raise both? Speech – is it slurred or jumbled? And Time, to call 9-1-1 or your local emergency service right away. Would you know when someone is having a stroke?
An appointed time for everything, a time for every thing under the heavens.