Saturday, April 5, 2008

A funny thing happened....

I really wasn't sure what to call this post or if I should even make it. But in the end I decided to share where I have been the last several days because I would want to know if it happened to you. A week ago Friday I was coloring a stamped image in my stamp room, which is my loft and I sit near a window. I noticed that it seemed very bright even though the blinds were drawn and I remember being a little agitated that I couldn't really do anything about it. I also noticed when I looked up that it seemed to be somewhat cloudy in the upper right corner of my right eye, again really annoying, but after 10 minutes or so it went away and I didn't think anything about it until a little later that day after this happened. I was taking my daughter for a couple of errands and lunch (it was the day that I had the steak salad from heaven). I was driving on the freeway and singing my heart out (I had to confess this in order for the story to flow) to a song I know very well when suddenly all that was coming out of my not highly trained voice box was jibberish. It was really somewhat fascinating, almost like I had the sudden capability of speaking another language. I tried for a probably a minute to speak clearly (my thoughts were perfectly clear) and tried to say my daughter's name which she didn't respond to because it was not her name that came out of my mouth. I tried to call my husband, it just went to voice mail, then I called my mom...by the time she answered I was back to normal and didn't mention what happened to her because she was literally on her way to the airport for a flight to China (this is another very long story that I might share in a couple of days). Right after that call my husband returned my call and I told him what had just happened. He thought I just needed some food, which I was happy to oblige with:) Later that afternoon I Googled searched the symptoms on web MD. When I clicked on the symptom of speech impairment, I had already added vision problems to my list, a red warning box came up that said seek immediate medical attention. So I called my neighbor who is a retired nurse. Now, please be aware that I am sharing my stupidity with you as a lesson, please don't judge too harshly. I told her what happened and she checked my blood pressure, normal, and looked at my eyes and my face, no problems. She said "You know your symptoms are classic signs of a stroke?". "Yes" I said "I am aware of that now! Do you think I need to go to the emergency room right now?" She told me she thought I was ok for the moment, but made me promise to go see a doctor on Monday. I told her I would. I didn't have any other symptoms or problems over the weekend and really didn't think about it.



On Monday, the phones, both land and cell were down for most of the day and on Tuesday I simply forgot about making an appointment. On Wednesday it was on my list of things to do. I should mention that we recently changed insurance companies and the doctor I had seen, over three years ago had moved offices and I didn't know where they were and they weren't on my new provider list. I picked a neurologist off the new list and called and told the office person what had happened and asked if I could have an appointment. She said they would see me in 2 hours. "Wow," I thought "that's great customer service." I went to the appointment and told the doctor what had happened 5 days earlier. I truly believed he would say that I obviously had no lasting damage from what happened and that he would schedule me for an MRI in the next several days. That is not what happened. He said I am calling the emergency room of the hospital (located right next door) and you are going to be admitted right now. Oh. I called my husband and said I would be in the hospital for a couple of hours, the Dr. heard me saying this and said "No, you will be in the hospital for at least 3 days" I started to cry, he clearly didn't know that I had things to stamp and laundry to do:) They got me admitted really quickly and started with a CAT scan and a very large blood draw. The next day I had an Echocardiagram and a MRI. Both those tests came back negative, meaning that I was not in any impending stage of doom and that there was no conclusive reason for what had happened. It did also show that I didn't have any permanent brain damage, thank God! The last test to be done on Friday was a Transesophageal Echogardiogram, a very pleasant test in which they give you a mild sedative and shove a tube down your throat to get a really up close picture of your heart. They were looking for a hole that could have caused a blood clot. Nothing! I was released and was told that if I experienced any of these symptoms again to get immediate medical attention. I will be taking a baby aspirin from here on out. The actual medical diagnosis for what happened to me is called a TIA (Trasient Ischemic Attack) a baby stroke.


I didn't do the right thing when I first had symptoms and the result could have been tragic. The doctor told me that I could have lost the power of speech had the clot been worse. Please, please, please pay attention to your body and recognize when something is not quite right and seek help. Because I have lots of information on this, I will share the symptoms of a TIA

A temporary loss or change of vision.
Temporary numbness on one side.
Temporary inability to speak.
Temporary areas of weakness.
Weakness or numbness in the face, arms, or legs.
Dizzines or difficulty walking.
Slurred speech or difficulty swallowing.


Be well my blogging and stamping friends. I am going to take a walk and get caught up on my laundry. Hopefully I will have some cards to share in a day or two.

Thanks for stamping by!
Laura~

22 comments:

Janine said...

Wow! That's scary...I'm glad you're okay!

Peggy Maier said...

Maybe your post should have been titled "A not so funny thing happened!" Thanks for the heads-up on the symptoms! Glad everything checked out ok!

Amy said...

Wow, I'm so glad you finally went to the dr. My FIL had one of those TIA's at least 5 years ago, and has been fine every since. Glad you're ok!!

pescbrico said...

I'm so very happy you are ok! This can leave very serious damage and I'm so glad you don't have any and that they have you take that aspirin that will decrease the risk of having others! Take good care of yourself!

Suzanne said...

Laura, What a scary thing especially to have happen while driving. So glad things worked out okay for you.

Sabrina aka okimom2girlz said...

Oh my gosh, but girl, this is not funny at all. We won't even think about the things that could have happened to you while driving down the highway. Thank God that you are all right now and things turned out the way they did.

You definitely had a gurdian angel.

Take care of yourself

Sandra Smart said...

Oh my gosh Laura, how very scary! I am so glad to hear that you are ok though. After all, who would visit me on my blog if you were not able to! ;) Seriously, you are definitely in my prayers. Keep well!

Rosella said...

I am so thankful that you are well!! And thank you so much for sharing with us. You're in my prayers!!

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the informative post. Glad everything turned out okay for you. Take care of yourself. Lots of love, Denise in the UK x
denisemorgans@aol.com

Katie said...

Hi Laura,

My purpose in visiting was to tell you that I linked you for the Arte Y Pico award. If you get a chance, check out the details on my blog.

But wow, I'm glad that I came to visit and I'm glad that you shared your experience, and I'm GLAD that you are ok and safe. Its so true though how we just go on with life. Its much better to be safe than sorry later.

Take care. (((hugs))))

Janna~Country Creek Creations said...

Laura I am so glad you went in & got yourself checked. I had a similar incident many years ago. I wasn't as lucky. I had a brain tumor that was treatable but because I didn't have it checked right away I lost a lot of my vision. So never leave anything to chance. Go in & let them tell you it's nothing. Take care of yourself. :)

Anonymous said...

I'm glad you are doing better and thank you for sharing such a personal matter with everyone I know it will help someone. I will sure have you in my prayers. :)

Sharon said...

I'm glad you're okay. Do take care when things don't seem right in the future. Thanks for sharing with us your experiences....I would probably have done what you did til NOW. Take care.

Katviper said...

Wow, how many times have we all not gone to the doctor when maybe we should have. I'm so glad you shared your story. It should make us all think twice, when we think we are to busy to go to the doctor. I'm so glad ok.

Jessie/knightrone said...

OMG, you are busy wishing me well, and all the while you are in a semi-could have been horrid-crisis!!! I am so happy to hear that you are okay, but next time, haul your booty to the dr. I don't care how good the salad is!!LOL
Seriously though, I am so glad that you are fine, and that your dr. didn't blow you off(they sometimes do that ya know)

Kelley H. said...

I have to confess..I almost did not read this since there was no card....lol! Thank you for this important information.. Thank God you are Ok and it was a mini!!

thinker said...

oh my goodness... that could have been so much worse... SO glad (& thankful) that it worked out this way!!

Carrie said...

Crazy! So glad to hear everything is ok!

Kristin said...

Oh Laura, thank goodness this turned out the way it did! And how thoughtful of you to list the symptoms to maybe help out someone else. Please take care of yourself!

Michelle said...

OMGoodness Laura! What an experience. I'm so glad you're better and better informed! The minute I began reading your post I knew...years of having a nurse for a mother. I've very glad it's all worked out. Stay safe and healthy...and stamping!

Michelle

Tandra said...

WOW! Extremely scary!! The strange language would have been my first indication to RUN to the ER!!
Im glad you got checked out. Too many of us overworked, multi-tasking moms dont pay attention to ourselves and out health. We are always last in line!!
Take care, hope you stay well!

Susan said...

Laura - thank you for your post. I too recently had a vision "incident" and just happened to mention it to my dr. the next week when I was there for something else and she made sure I got all the tests I needed - cardiac (I have an artificial heart valve), eyes and MRI. While they were specifically checking for a possible stroke, on the MRI they found a mass in my brain - not cancer but something - so I will be meeting with a neurosurgeon very soon to discuss this. You are right - even if you don't think it is a big thing, tell a medical professional and don't wait. There could be so many things it could be and you don't want to take any chances. Educating people via this blog is a great thing. Best wishes to you and hoping for continued good health for you.
Susan
a fellow stamper