Tag Archives: stroke

A Stroke at Age 25

It was March 24, 2014 and Savannah Tapler was on her way to work, excited to get the day going. It was her 25th birthday, but before the day was out, she would find herself facing the hardest test of her young life.

As Savannah arrived to work that morning at Lexington Medical Center — she’s a planning analyst — she stumbled getting out of her car. She was limping but felt no pain. As Savannah tried to walk toward her office, she could go no farther and called out for help. Co-workers rushed to her and took her to the Emergency department.

Savannah learned she suffered a burst blood vessel in her brain, resulting in a stroke. “When the doctor told me he thought I was having a stroke, I just couldn’t believe it,” she said. “Stroke is not something you associate with someone my age. I was dumbfounded.”

Savannah had always watched her diet and worked out on a regular basis. Now the doctor was telling her she may walk again but likely not run.

Once she had recovered enough to be released from Lexington Medical Center, Savannah went directly to a rehabilitation hospital. “I had one job to do and that was to get back to my old self,” she recalled.

Savannah had at least three hours of therapy every day and usually stayed longer to put in extra effort. By the time she was released from the rehabilitation center, she was able to take a few steps without holding on to anything for support. Her rehabilitation continued through outpatient therapy. She consistently worked on her recovery, taking exercise bands home and playing games such as picking up marbles with her toes. Her husband Aidan also learned some of the exercises so that he could help at home.

Today, Savannah is completely recovered. “I had a bit of lingering shaking in my leg for a while,” she said. “But that has almost completely disappeared.”
And now she has a bundle of joy that keeps her on the go as she and Aidan welcomed their son Beckett in the fall of 2015.

While Savannah’s stroke may not have been preventable — doctors now say she suffered from a ‘spontaneous intracranial hemorrhage’ that may have been the result of a weakened blood vessel since birth – she understands the significance of seeking help for stroke as quickly as possible. “I believe that getting to a doctor as quickly as I did probably saved my life.”

 

Lexington Medical Center is a Primary Stroke Center. The hospital has also received a Gold Plus award from the American Heart Association and American Stroke Association. Both honors recognize Lexington Medical Center’s commitment to and success in stroke care.

For Stroke, Think F-A-S-T!

Thank you to our friends at the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control and the South Carolina Hospital Association for sharing this important information.

Lexington Medical Center Earns Stroke Award

For the sixth consecutive year, Lexington Medical Center has received a “Gold Plus” Quality Achievement Award for stroke care from the American Heart Association and American Stroke Association’s Get With The Guidelines® – Stroke program. The “Gold Plus” award is the highest honor bestowed to hospitals for stroke care and recognizes commitment and success in implementing excellent care for stroke patients.

“Lexington Medical Center is proud to receive this award as it demonstrates our commitment to being one of the top hospitals in the country for providing effective, evidence-based stroke care,” said Vicky Hicks, RN, BSN, CPHQ, outcomes coordinator at Lexington Medical Center.

2016 Gold Plus AHA ASA Award iconThe honor goes to hospitals with excellent adherence to stroke quality indicators and measures, including aggressive use of proven medications, therapy, cholesterol reducing drugs and smoking cessation, all aimed at reducing death and disability, and improving the lives of stroke patients.

According to the American Heart Association and American Stroke Association, stroke is one of the leading causes of death and serious, long-term disability in the United States. On average, someone suffers a stroke every 40 seconds; someone dies of a stroke every four minutes; and 795,000 people suffer a new or recurrent stroke each year.

A stroke occurs when a clot blocks a blood vessel carrying oxygen and nutrients to the brain or bursts. When that happens, part of the brain cannot get the blood and oxygen it needs and begins to die. Warning signs include weakness on one side of the body, slurred speech, facial drooping, confusion and the inability to talk. Risk factors for stroke are untreated high blood pressure, diabetes, smoking and high cholesterol. Stroke is an emergency. Call 911 at the first sign of stroke. Modifying your lifestyle can help prevent stroke.

Lexington Medical Center also has certification from Det Norske Veritas Healthcare, Inc. as a Primary Stroke Center in the Midlands. The Certification Program for Primary Stroke Centers recognizes organizations that follow the best practices for stroke care. Achieving Primary Stroke Center Certification indicates the hospital’s dedication to cultivating better outcomes for patients.

May is Stroke Awareness Month. Think F.A.S.T. to remember the warning signs of stroke.

Face – Look for an uneven smile.
Arm – Check if one arm is weak.
Speech – Has speech become difficult?
Time – Call 9-1-1 immediately.

For more information, visit LexMed.com/Stroke