Hello from a Newbie 😊

Hello all, I’m Sam (Samantha) and I am recovering from a stroke on 26/11/23. My paperwork reads “left anterior thalamus in keeping with acute infarction. “ I’m hoping to get more of an understanding of what that means when I have my appointment in a few weeks. I didn’t realise I was having a stroke as my symptoms weren’t the typical fast. The previous evening I slurred my speech and was very giggly almost as though drunk and couldn’t get up off the sofa. I’d been sitting laughing with my son and thought it was tiredness (strokes happen to old people!!) it passed so quickly we thought nothing of it. Then during the night I woke and couldn’t move or speak, again it passed and I fell sleep.
When i woke in the morning it was as though it was a dream and we thought it was maybe sleep paralysis. It wasn’t until my son noticed me trying to eat my cereals with a fork that we realised something was wrong.

Fast forward A&E and 21 episodes later, 27 hours later the MRI confirmed it. Although I had lots of little episodes (couldnt speak or laughed hysterically, couldn’t move my right hand or arm, zoned out, eye droop and mouth droop, then within minutes was back to normal ) Sadly I spent my time in the waiting room and each time I had an episode there was no staff around, each time I went for obs I was absolutely fine!

I spent 5 days in and felt a fraud as I thought I was fine…until I had to sign for my belongings, I was distraught to find I couldn’t write! My arms are weak and get tired easily, but I can now write. My brain isn’t what it was.

Grrr my iPad is about to die and the charger won’t work, can’t lose all this so I’ll say goodbye for now and wish you all well on your journeys Sam x

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Hi Sam @Sammy1

So sorry to hear your story - it won’t surprise anybody here!

Now you’re here WELCOME to the best club in town that has no waiting list & never turned a new member away :slight_smile:

You will find the crowd here are a friendly knowledgeable bunch who are generous enough to share there experience!

The welcome post - Click the blue text says the stuff that we typically repeat every time.

the reality of knowing the physical location of damage to the brain won’t give you much insight into the journey the rest of your life will follow. Medical science hasn’t really understood how physical damage disrupts brain networks.

I guess they’ve given you the standard cocktail of pills: blood pressure, cholesterol, stomach protector, antisplatelet? It’s probably take a while to get used to them / tune your recipe :slight_smile:

Do you have a cause yet? Quite a lot of us never get one.
When one can be found then you’ll have a better idea of addressing risk factors going forwards.

I imagine the other folk will be along soon to say hi and to offer some perspectives etc

Ciao
Simon

Oh PS You should do the survey Did ANYONE have classic FAST symptoms

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Hi again, I just wanted to ask if anyone has had anything similar to me, the stroke nurse described it as a “naughty stroke” and I believe I will have more of them. I’m scared to google as there are such horror stories on there , I’m worried enough!
I’ve been told I can’t drive yet and have a drs appointment next Tuesday where I’m hoping she will say I’m fit to drive.
I honestly thought I wasn’t really affected but then we tried to play the 1% club game which I’m normally pretty good at (logic not facts!) and I couldn’t read it all quick enough and then needed much longer to process it and think! That has really knocked me and the thought of going to work in a classroom full of children is quite terrifying.
I keep being told we need to exercise and walk, then today there was an article saying walking in the cold can bring on heart attacks and Strokes! It really is hard to know what to do for the best!
Sorry for my waffle, hope you’re all well.
Sam.x

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Thank you Simon, well my days of clubbing are behind me so I’ll settle for this club any day! :blush:
Yes I’m on a fine array of medication, I was on BP tablets prior and had literally just been given statins for cholesterol 4 days before my stroke, but they have been upped and I’m on 40mg now, I’m also on Clopidogrel 75mg.
Nobody has given me a cause, but high bp, cholesterol , overweight and a born worrier I’ve haven’t helped myself at all!
Ironically it was probably the worry of dying young and leaving my son (he has autism ) and my folks dying (we are a small close family) that caused it!!!
If only it was easy not to worry!
Thanks for your advice, I’m slowly making my way around the site.
Sam x

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@Sammy1 Hi & welcome to the forum. Sorry you’ve had cause to join us but now you’re here you’re in good company.

How typical that your episodes had passed each time a medic saw you. Sadly your wait in A&E seems about standard these days.

It is a shock to the system when these things happen. I was 49 when i had my stroke & like you never gave it a thought as i was too young & the fittest i’d been in my life.

All the effects you describe should start to improve in time & hopefully you’ve been referred to the relevant services e.g Occupational therapy to get the help you need.

As for the classroom of children…you might want to wait a while. You’d be surprised how much they’ll tire you out.

Wishing you all the best

Ann

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Don’t worry about waffling @Sammy1 - This is the place to have a cathartic rant, cry when you need to, celebrate Your achievements, Ask questions etc

Your sense of worry etc is very normal. On today’s zoom we were chatting about how most folk’s initial anxiety had faded. And Id tell you the other things if my short-term memory worked better than it does but it doesn’t! but we managed to waffle to each other for 2 hours

I’m guessing from the fact that you’re hoping to be cleared fit for driving that you didn’t surrender You’re driving licence and didn’t have it revoked - and from that that you haven’t been left with much disability of arm, leg, sight etc?
I believe that DVLA guidelines allow you to drive a month after a neurological event if cleared medically.
There is quite a lot of ‘driving after stroke’ as well on here that you can find by searching with the magnifying glass in the top right hand corner.
If you can’t find it and you need it let me know and I’ll find it for you :slight_smile:
Ciao
Simon

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Yes Simon, I was initially told not to drive for 4 weeks nd then my GP said she didn’t think I was fit to drive, which has taken me over another 4 weeks, due to my arms tiredness and lack of concentration. I must admit I did read up but have since forgotten what to do next! I will check before my next appointment.
Thanks :blush:

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Hi Ann, thank you for your reply, it’s lovely when people reach out and acknowledge you, :two_hearts:
Yes I was 53 when I had mine, and although not fit I certainly wouldn’t put myself down as very unhealthy. I’m off work at the moment, thankfully my headteacher is very understanding.
Wishing you all the best.
:blush:

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@Sammy1, hi Sam and welcome. Re. your driving, you must inform your insurance company that you’ve had a stroke. They all have different rules but they won’t kick up a fuss and most likely won’t want anything in writing, but you must tell them. Then if you are not sure what to do next wait until you have spoken to your OT about it. They will advise you what to do. You only need to inform the DVLA if there are certain conditions present so get advice first. Obviously if your doctor has said you mustn’t drive then don’t be tempted to risk it…You will probably need to get your vision tested as well as demonstrate your don’t have limb weakness etc.Best wishes for a speedy recovery.

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Hi, thank you. I was waiting to hear what the dr said, but was going to contact my insurance once I knew. When I last asked my Dr she was unsure of the protocol but had said to leave it a little while. I really have missed driving but wouldn’t put myself or anyone else at risk.
Thanks again.:blush:

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Fingers crossed for you for your driving. I had similar episodes to you, no classic signs of stroke, just slurring words a couple of times when by myself, was aware but just dismissed it “ what was that all about ? Then at night strange vision. Couple of days later zapped. HBP ! Ouch. Never knew I had it, was fit as fiddle. So now the path back to a different life. Sorry you had to join us , but as a self help group you won’t find a better bunch. Paul

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Hi Paul, it’s a bit of a shock isn’t it!! I must admit I am finding it hard to get my head around it all. :woman_facepalming:t2: I think it’s the unknown and not knowing when/if the next one will be and how I will be affected! Reading the posts on here I have been very lucky this time. Wishing you all the best :blush: x

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Hi Sammy1 our biggest anxiety after the stroke is another and it does dwell on our minds for a while. But we can conquer it. The way I tackled it was convincing myself I’m now on medication, I’m eating healthy, taking it easy with exercises and the NHS is there for us… Find a system of mindfulness that works for you. Best advice I was given to accept it ,which is a tough one , was accept something is missing that’s impossible to describe! Futile trying to explain and be gentle with yourself and take your time to get back to some sort of norm. Ask anything on here………. We may have suggestions to help you along. Paul

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Hi Sam and a very big welcome to this forum. We are a merry band of stroke survivors and their carers and families. There is always someone here to listen and offer advice and information. Nothing beats speaking to someone who knows exactly what you are going through and we look forward to hearing from you when you feel ready to reach out. I’m 7 years post stroke and this is still my go to place for information or a shoulder to cry on when things get tough.

Take care and I wish you well in your recovery.

Regards Sue

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Hi Sue, thank you for your warm welcome! I’m loving the site already, it’s been so helpful and informative. I’ve so many questions so I look forward to hearing from fellow survivors! Thank you for taking the time to reply. Sam :blush: x

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Hi @Sammy1 sorry you are having to join us. I had my stroke just before Christmas diagnosed on 28th with CT scan. Still awaiting MRI. I was the same just numb down right side and leg felt a bit funny thought it was a trapped nerve! Don’t ever feel a fraud I said that to ambulance crew on the 29th and they hit the roof. I am having to up my Atorvastatin to 80mg due to cholesterol being high, Drs phoned yesterday and had to go in for bloods today as well. Apparently as well as cholesterol being high so is my blood sugar. Going to be a lot of issues to get sorted out.

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Hi Steve, my CT scan didn’t show my stroke :woman_facepalming:t2: luckily they did an MRI which did! I’ve had heart traces and scans but still awaiting results from them. Thank you for your kind words, can’t tell you how nice it feels to talk to people who get it!! :blush: x

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Hello Sammy, I had my stroke (a bleed) in August last year. I was discharged from hospital in mid October. I now walk around the house unaided. I’m slowly working on my weak arm. My prob is a stiff shoulder making arm, wrist and hand movement harder. I can do a bit with that arm anyway, just needs more exercise. You’ll have loads of fatigue, frustrations, good and bad days. Don’t sweat it. Just keep your partner in the picture, you need their support. Also, you need good therapists to help your rehab. Mine are from the council and are great. I have had carers initially, when my wife went back to work. I manage pretty well on my own now, like getting my own lunch and a drink. My mood is good mostly and I got on with a few interests which keeps me busy. Keep optimistic. We Strokies are just challenged and special. :+1:

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Aww Mikey you are doing so well!! Loving your positivity :muscle:t4: The last two days I’ve felt much more positive. Long may it last for us all! :blush: x

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Hi @Sammy1 I too want to welcome you to the forum. Don’t bother googling just yet, just wait 'til your sensible head is screwed back on and feeling a little more rational about it.
Strokes take everyone by surprise and the shock of it can ricocheted for months after as the brain has so much juggling, bypassing and rerouting to do to maintain some semblance of normality and functionality whilst healing and repairing at the same time. Sleep is all over the place and that also heightens emotions and its all the same as with any other major trauma. But it does get better with time.

Don’t be in a hurry to get back to driving and work just yet. Give it another month at least before you test those waters. Your brain has gone through major trauma and needs time to heal the same as a broken leg or open heart surgery.

Be kind to your brain and I look forward to seeing you around the forum :people_hugging:

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