Monday, March 1, 2010


Well, there it is. Heredity finally caught me up and put me into hospital for several days.

It all started with one side of my body getting pins and needles right down to one half of my tongue. That was a bit weird but it passed off really quickly and I thought nothing of it. Two days later the same thing happened only this time the whole side lost strength and I couldn't stand up so we rang the help line and as a result of that, went straight to the emergency room. I got taken immediately for a blood pressure test and when that came out at 235 over 170 they put me on a bed and gave me some drugs. They also put in a line and took a few blood tests and urine tests (good thing I needed to go anyhow) and then left me to my own devices for a while before repeating the blood pressure test.

That bed was the most uncomfortable thing I have ever had to lie on period! The only thing worse was the blood pressure tests. Because the pressure was so high, they practically removed my arm to get any sort of reading. I still have some tenderness even after a week.

Fortunately I had grabbed a book as we left home so I didn't have to stare at the ceiling too much. Unfortunately, my head was so bad I couldn't read easily and my memory for what I read also seemed somewhat lacking so I spent a few hours talking to the guy in the next bed who was there with more or less the same thing as me. He went up to the wards at three in the morning but I had to wait until well after nine before they found me a bed.

Friday was a bit of a nightmare punctuated by one of the nicest nurses I've come across - a Buddhist nun no less! My head felt like someone had poured concrete into it complete with a thick headache and you could have fried an egg on my cheeks. Very unpleasant. I was given a stack of pills to take but I didn't really begin to notice much difference until Saturday. By that time I'd had a brain scan and an x-ray as well as another visitation from the vampires taking blood samples (complete with a bat shadow on their equipment cart!)

I can say that the food was pretty good, the staff were great and really friendly and I have some new friends from the other beds in the ward (there were four beds in my ward but only three were in use while I was there).

By Sunday I really was a lot better although my blood pressure was still 170 over 80. That at least was nearer to normal and I hoped to be let loose on Monday although I wasn't holding my breath. I was now allowed to ignore the red bracelet that said I was at risk of falling - yay - and did a lap around the corridor to celebrate including a visit to my friend from the emergency room who also hoped to be let loose on Monday. I think I have to learn all about movement again because that just tired me out completely.

So Monday came and the consultants and their students came and discussed me and said I could go if the physio said I was safe to do so. They gave me a prescription and that was it except that I had to walk another lap with a really nice physio and go up and down a number of stairs so she could check my balance. That was ok so they turned the stroke help people loose on me and when they were done I was free. Sort of!

I now have a thing to sit on in the shower, instructions for gentle exercise, information on exactly what an ischaemic stroke is, a contact to help the kids understand what it is and how to deal with stuff and several numbers to ring if I need anything.

Since then I have been dealing with extreme fatigue, gentle exercise and males who cook only under protest and haven't the faintest idea about cleaning up and putting things away :) I must say I have a great support system of friends and family. I also had an ultrasound of my neck which was in the clear so I don't seem to have ateriosclerosis, just hypertension and as I said at the start, that is hereditary in our family. I was just hoping to be one of the unaffected lucky ones :)

viv in nz


Madz said...

hey Viv,
Sorry to here about your Stroke. glad things seem to be coming right for you now though.


Colin said...

Good grief, Viv, I just read about this on Chile Chews and came straight over here. I'll be over tomorrow with some baking and/or soup. Something substantial, anyway.

see you then...


Chile said...

Wow, Viv, what an experience. I do hope recovery will progress well for you and that the males might prove trainable in the domestic arts.

Going Crunchy said...

Ouch!!!! I hope you are feeling better!