Act or not to act?

A friends question regarding his father’s Health prompted me to write this Blog

His father had displayed what appeared to me to be to be obvious signs of Stroke or TIA (Transient Ischaemic Attack). Following visits to two GP’s he was told he had probably had a stroke, it wasn’t known whether the stroke was due to a bleed or a clot, but was just told to go home, without any medication and return to the surgery in a weeks’ time.

Fortunately, at the risk of blowing my own trumpet here, my friend decided to give me a call following a discussion we had had about a book I have just written called “Two Strokes Not Out”, a personal experience guide for stroke survivors and their families.

My friend felt the behaviour his father was displaying was not right and shouldn’t be ignored for a whole week. He remembered the classic things to look for, numbness, appearing drunk, confused and a person not being their normal self being some of them. On hearing this I told him to get his father to the hospital straight away.

He acted correctly, believed in all the right things stroke awareness is trying to promote so took his father into the Accident & Emergency Department, where he was given a scan.

The results confirmed that he had experienced a stroke caused by a clot and is now on the correct medication.

Had my friend ignored the signs and just assumed that just because the signs had gone away that the problem had too, then his father could have ended up having a large stroke and possibly long term paralysis, or worse.

Remember a TIA is an indication that there is an underlying problem that needs addressing. It can be a blessing in disguise, because as long as the situation is identified and resolved it will/could prevent a full stroke.

Always remember just because the symptoms have disappeared the underlying problem has not. Make sure you have the correct tests and do not be concerned about asking questions repeatedly until getting answers. You know what a relatives normal behaviour is like, a doctor, seeing them for just a few minutes does not, therefore you are better qualified to notice those behaviours which are out of character or movements that have been restricted or have changed.

Approximately 10,000 strokes could be prevented per year if TIA’s were treated, in other words do not leave it, always Act & Act FAST.

FAST test


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