Frightened of ticking timebomb

I was diagnosed with a TIA last Tuesday and I think I am in denial, because I am swinging between refusing to accept it and terror at the lack of reassurance that it won't happen again.  I spoke to a stroke nurse yesterday who was frighteningly pessimistic for a good outcome.  I feel like no matter how much I make the lifestyle changes (I am doing), take the Statins and Clopi, I am expected to have a full blown stroke.  I am fighting to get my doctor to start investigations but they seem to have just accepted that I need to wait for the stroke proper and then they'll deal with it. I am 51, healthy and don't have high cholestrol.  I do everything right.

I also can't find anyone who can relate to my 'brain fart symptoms' nor the stuff that is happening to me. Is it possible to start a thread where you describe the confusion side of things you experienced?

I had a cold feeling flow from my head downwards (I have had this sensation a few times since).  Then it was like I could only see inward and all these bright lights and crazy images bombarded me.  I thought it went on for ages but was only a few seconds.  I had numbness/tngling on my left side of face and arm but no trouble moving ( my left arm was a bit slow). The weirdest thing was that everything felt like when you wake up from a dream and you are trying to remember what happened. And then for the next 5 hours I was having dreams while I was awake. I couldn't tell the difference. 


What I'm hoping is that no one will relate to this and that you'll all say ' nah, you're fine'!...

Hi Kaytie, hang in there, someone from this site will see your post and give you advice, support and reassurance.  I feel very cross with the attitude of certain medical professionals towards stroke survivors - you have survived, you're clearly strong and surely you will make a good recovery, but you don't need negativity from people who should be helping you.  

There are stroke survivors on this site who were given a very gloomy prognosis post-stroke, and yet they have made good recoveries and have great stories to tell.  

It's very early days for you, so don't despair, give yourself plenty of rest and try to stay positive.  Check this forum regularly, because you will receive lots of support, and you will become very well informed, so that when you return to your GP you will be able to be clearer about what you expect them to do for you!  

Take good care xx

Hello Katie,

You are not going crazy! It affects us all differently and  some of the symptoms will  be unique to you.

I too, was afraid that I would have another and stroke and to be honest the thought does cross my mind. However,  you have a had a TIA and that is most definitely a warning sign. So, in my humble opinion your TIA was a warning sign. You are now on the right drugs and lifestyle to help prevent another stroke.  No one can say for sure if you'll have another TIA or a stroke. They say that if you do it may occur in the first week  or up to a month after your first.
Give your self a break and be kind to yourself. This has just happened to you! It takes a while to process and let it sink in. I was quite apprehensive and was lucky that my partner and daughter were around. I was also the same, took nearly 2 months to get my head around the fact I'd had a stroke. Even then I only wanted to tell very few people.

I found this site and my local Stroke Association rep to be really helpful. I wrote on another thread about what happened. I think the thread is " not having an understanding of what's happening" or similar.

Take care, we all recover differently.


Hi Katie, firstly  as many  will  tell you try keeping  positive, I had a stroke  on 11th January at 49,which  firstly  a tia was suspected like yourself, the constant fear of  another  an confusion is normal, and the why me attitude, as like you I'm fit and healthy, nearly  3 months on I feel angry, teary and have trouble  accepting it happened, I felt  sick all the way to work  when my started,then at work  a headache  came,left side of face dropped, as did my eye and lips,confused  angry, loss of balance  fell into a door,slurred speech like I was drunk,an left arm went numb and floppy, due to covid  have had terrible  treatment  from the start,still on going  scans, tests  etc,am on statins an clopidogrel too, although nearly  3 months  later,I can now drive  ,again  am  more positive ,still off work  tho,but you  will get there  its such a long recovery  process as many people  on here  will tell you, finding  stroke association has been a lifeline  in current  times too,everyone's  here for you,as we all understand, try an keep positive as it will an does get better  in time,as my consultant  said to me its a marathon  not a sprint, wishing  yiu a speedy  recovery ?

Also Katie  the way  you have been treated  is terrible  ,they've put the fear  into you, it will get better x

Hi Kaytie

I had a full stroke 4 yrs ago - like you, and many other stroke survivors, I was fit, normal weight, non smoker/drinker and went to the gym 3 times a week.  The general opinion I got from the stroke ward is that the fitter you are, the quicker your recovery is than someone who is unfit and probably wouldn't have survived.  I was told by the stroke nurse on the ward on my first night in hospital that I would carry on having strokes until the inevitable happened.  I hasten to add, this is NOT the case and total drivvle!  The stroke consultant told me the next day that after the first 3 months, I was at no more risk of having another than anyone else. So don't believe everything you hear from hospital staff. Another thing I was told was I wouldn't be able to drive for a year.  Again, not in my case, I was driving within a month with the approval from the consultant and my GP.  Once you are on the correct medication, chances of having another are pretty slim providing you take good care of yourself.

Having said that, I did have a TIA last Oct.  I was under a huge amount of stress at the time. I had lost my Mum-in-law to kidney cancer and was still grieving for her when my brother was also diagnosed with terminal cancer during the first lockdown. By the time he got to see the Cancer specialist, it was too late for him. It had spread throughout his body - metastatic cancer was confirmed and he was given 3 months. He lasted 6 weeks. He was my only remaining blood family and it hit me really hard.  I spent night after night griveing for him and still am. Consequently, a TIA got me 2 months after. Luckily it hasn't affected anything except I talk a bit more jibberish than I did before!  Talking backwards or selecting the wrong word is a daily common occurence but people have got used to it now and we just laugh it off.

Eat well, rest well, gentle exercise at first but most importantly don't let stress takeover - your brain really can't handle it.


Hi I had 4 stroke over a while according to the scan i thought it was bells palsey as I had that 5 years ago I was so sad that they said I had a stroke - not doing so well at the moment!  I just think I'm going to have another one ! 

After I had my stroke and was released after 3 weeks in hospital, they told me first thing I should do upon going home was see my GP. a cardiologist and a neurologist,  to try to discover the cause of the stroke, which I did.  The cardiologist discovered that I had afib, and that had caused a blood clot, which caused the stroke.  He treated me for that with medication,  and I've had no afib since treatment.  I don't worry about a recurrence at all, since the cause was discovered.  Maybe you can ask you doc if he could recommend a cardiologist to rule out afib-just a suggestion.   Love, Jeanne

Hi Pham it is a while before you get past that feeling you are going to have another, but it passes. You just have to take each day as it comes and think to yourself that you got through yesterday you can get through today and tomorrow,  and you will get there. U am 14 months post strike now, and have put in the background as much as I can that you could have another. Think of ways you can improve your life. Small exercises to start with, changing your diet, trying to walk as well as you can. My walking is still not good, my brain wont tell my legs to go, but walk with a walking stick. Keep going, you will get there. Come onto stroke forum at any time for support.

Best wishes Rita

This is my second tia and the weird sensation came in my hand which is the affected arm I don't know if the body it's telling me that I've over done it at least is reassuring that others have the same things I'm afraid if I'm going to have a full blown stroke too. I asked my doctor if there was anything I could do to prevent it happening was told that these things happen so we have to accept it and try to go at a slower pace than be a hare.