Terrible Winter for My Family

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misty'smom

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I have not been on the forum very much since the holidays..........the week between Christmas and New Years I came down with the flu, I did have my flu shot in October as I always do because I have RA. Having RA can cause serious complications from the flu.........and boy did it. I ended up in the hospital 3 seperate times within a month, the last time I was there for 7 days. The first 24 hours I ran a high fever of 103 and developed Percarditist ( the lining around your heart gets inflamed, causes a rubbing and pain). Then after 3 days in the hospital and lots of meds I went home to rest. After resting for a week I started having chest pains so back to the Dr I went........he did an EKG which was abnormal for a second time since onset of the flu and he heard a very loud heart murmur.My Mitro valve was leaking due to overactive heart. My heart was squeezing too hard causing the blood to go back the wrong way through the valve. He sent me to the ER and I stayed in the hospital for a week, lots of test, Cardioligists and different meds. I was sent home on a Beta Blocker and an asprin a day. It took about 6 weeks for me to feel better and get some energy back then Wham........

My husband was suppose to have a dental appt. after work one afternoon, the dentist called me to say "I did not do any dental work on your husband this afternoon because he was not acting right. He was slurring his words and his walking gait looked to be dragging on one side. I asked him if he wanted to go to a Dr or hospital and he said he was ok and he left to drive home" She told me to be ready when he got home to take him to the ER she suspected he was having a stroke!!!!!! I was in shock but my instincts kick in, not the time to get scared or upset but did say a prayer or two.........I was ready for him when he walk through the door, gave him an asprin and put him in the car and drove to the ER. I pulled up to the ER door and told them my husband was having a stoke and they were great, many, many teams of people sprung into action, blood work, trsts etc......within an hour thry had a helicopter ready to take him to UVA Charlottesville Va hospital about 40 mins away by car. my daughter and son drove there by car. He was there for 5 days and it was determined his stroke was caused by the main argery in his neck complrtly blocked off. I stayed at the hospital 24/7 .........he was next sent to a rehab near the hospital but after a week they did a CAT scan which turned out not good! The artery was not complrtly blocked anymore but had opened up a small amount. It is dangerous to leave it that way because it could close off again or throw a clot causing anotner stroke. Back to the hospital for surgery to open the artery via a balloon procedure and put in a stent. All went well, he was suppose to return to rehab but very adamentaly refused. He was completly down on his right side and his speech was so bad you could not understand him. So I brought him home where we are setting up PT, OT and speech in our home a couple of times a week. our first week was really rough but this second week is better as he is getting stronger and around better!! hevis using a walker with help but his speech is still really bad, he can not find the correct words to use so,it is very difficult to understand him:( sorry for such a long post but wanted to tell,all my "mini horsey friends" about what has happened to my family
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. it's been rough and very upsetting couple of months.........thanks for reading this post, it's kind of like me releasing some stress as if I was talking and you all were listening..........Thank you!!!!!!
 

Ryan Johnson

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Mistysmom, firstly sending you a massive hug
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My dad had a stroke due to the same artery being blocked about 5 years ago. It was really tough for him as he didn't have the usage of his body as he did before the stroke, and my dad is a really independent man so it made it really frustrating for him. I hope your husband will be ok, every day will get easier for him. Im glad you stopped by to tell us
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Sending you best wishes,

Take care
 

Kim P

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Misty's mom, what an ordeal you have been through. You are a very strong woman! So glad that you got well and that your hubby is improving! You were quick thinking. I will be praying for you. Vent away, it always helps. It also brings about more prayer! We can all use lots prayer.
 

7fluffyfriends

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Mistysmom - wow - you are amazing! Big hugs, lots of prayers. As Ryan said, and you are beginning to see, things will improve. So glad you were able to set up professional in house care - excellent to not be driving back and forth!

Your husband sounds very independent and being home probably gives a huge boost to his morale, even if he can't fully express that now.

One day at a time, and if all of your horse chores aren't always done as you normally do them - that is ok! The animals don't mind as much as we do! In fact, I think mentally most ponies are lazing in a recliner - no worries for them!

Good for your dentist too - she was totally aware and got the ball rolling for you both!

A poster I saw last year in the hospital (waiting for hubby's tests, etc.) said, "Spring never forgets to come"....................
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misty'smom

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Thank you for all the kind words! We are just taking it day by day. He has seen his speech therapist twice and will see her tomorrow morning. The OT came by today to do an evaluation and will start her visits next week. The PT will come tomorrow to do his evaluation. So things are moving forward. It's just such a life changing adjustment and I think now that things have settled down, we are home and past the crucial part it's beginning to sink in. It's a shock to wake up one day with everything fine in the morning but then have your world turned upside down by day's end.

Ryan, how much progress did you Dad improve? Were both sides affected? John's issues are all with his right side and then his speech issues of aphasia. But they keep saying it's early on only 1 month post his stroke. Just seems like it has been longer........

7fluffy friends, yes it sure is a blessing not to have to drive back and forth. Our hospital here in town is small and he was flown by helicopter the night of the stroke to a University hospital about an hour away by car. The rehab that he was in for that short time before returning to the hospital is only 10mins from that hospital so that is so far too. When he was in the hospital I stayed there 24/7 from the first night until he went to the rehab facility, then stayed again for his surgery for the stent. I had a neighbor take care of my 2 minis and my grown children took care of our doggies
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It was really hard driving back and forth to the rehab everyday. My middle child, my daughter, her husband and my 2yr old granddaughter came home from Germany for the week he was in rehab so I had company driving. My oldest daughter and my youngest my son also drove with me too. But having him home to get rehab has been less stressful!

Thanks again for listening (reading lol) it does help as Kim said. And........Praying is so important, I do believe in the power of prayer and the more my forum friends know of my situation then hopefully the more prayers will be said!!
 

Ryan Johnson

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Dads stroke was in the right side of his brain therefore it affected the left side of his body. You husband seems to have suffered it in the left side of his brain which affects the right side of the body and also speech. Dad has improved a lot over the last few years. His movement and ability to use the left hand side has increased but he really struggles with things like stairs and uneven ground. He finds it worse in the colder months when it is really cold. My sister and I brought him a foot massage / vibration machine that increases the blood flow throughout his feet and legs and he said that last winter just gone ( May-July2014) was a lot easier than the previous winters due to this machine.

Dad also goes to a rehabilitation class once a week still and he is happy to continue to do so, as there are others in his class that have suffered from a stroke. Being able to discuss things with others that are going through the same thing is reassuring to both parties he says. He loves my step mum dearly but said sometimes he just likes to talk with others going through the same thing.

Unfortunately with this kind of injury,Frustration is the biggest hurdle to get past for your husband.

I spent a lot of time on the web after it happened. You think "maybe I could try this" or "maybe this will help" Unfortunately it all comes down to time Misty'smom.

Maybe there could be some kind of support group near you that when the time is right your husband may like to join.

I will send you a PM with my email address and I am here if you ever want to ask any questions
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Take care
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Kim P

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Glad all the kids were there to help you. It is wonderful you got to spend time with your family from Germany. Glad things are going a bit smoother. Prayers still coming your way.
 

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