Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Greg Update 2/24/10

What a difference 10 days make. 10 days ago I was so thrilled at Greg's progress, while today things look muted, as if we're in this dark tunnel, searching for the light.

The bottom line is that Greg apparently had a mild-stroke on the same area as before. He was riding his excercise bike at work when a feeling came over him of tingling and numbness over the whole left side of his body. He got a ride home immediately and at home fell several times.

Because of the way it happened he thought it was a TIA (TIA means "transient ischemic attack", often considered a warning sign of a stroke), made worse by his falls-he had a particularly nasty fall on our hard floors which was not good and left him in a lot of pain. He had several TIAs before his last stroke, so that's what he thought it was.  We called his Neurologist and he stated if he got another one to immediately head to the ER, which we for certain planned to do. It was only later, when the numbess didn't go completely away, not regaining the use of his left arm and leg as before that we started thinking that what we were facing was not a TIA but an actual stroke with no warning signs.

How could this be? Just two weeks ago he had a complete workup. His cholesterol/Tryglicerides were in the "normal' range, his blood pressure had been normal for months now, he's still taking his cumadin (blood thinner), cholesterol/tryclicerides, blood pressure, and anxiety medications. We changed our diet, even going organic. How could this be? How could this be? How could this be? It made ZERO sense.

When all he wanted to do was sleep and looked lethargic that's when I was not going to wait around anymore and his Dr. squeezed us in the AM.
The first things out of the Drs' mouth was... "Why aren't you in the hospital'? Yes, yes, we heard that before. Please everyone, if you love us, DO NOT ask us why. We thought it was a TIA, Greg was convinced it was a TIA. We had talked to the Neurologist, even bugging him at home. As the Dr. told us, unless you can get to the ER within 4 hours of a stroke, the clot busting medication isn't going to work, so there was no point going in now.

From there we saw another Doctor who went through Greg's entire "stroke" history. They took his blood, took different tests, and sent us over to the imaging center to do a Carotid Doppler Ultrasound, to check the blood flow of the veins in his neck. When we arrived back the Doctor told us all the tests came back negative, and it was apparent that this mild stroke hit most likely the same part of he brain as before. We have an appointment for the morning with the Neurologist to see about getting an MRI as soon as possible, and we have another appointment set up with another Neurologist next week and a renoun expert in Loma Linda after that.

At the moment Greg is sleeping. He's exhausted. We have a boatload of questions for the Neurologist tomorrow, such as... why did this happen when his numbers are perfect? Is there a limit of excercise he can do? Is this going to happen again?

From the look of things at the moment looks like all the progress Greg has made in the past 3 months (since roughly mid-november) is gone. He used to be able to walk (albeit slowly) without his brace, but no more. He had made quite a bit of progress on his arm and hand and it's all gone. His face does not look any different and he can walk with the brace not needing the walker, which is great news.
The only thing left is that I want him to stay home for a good month to get better and all his leave and vacation is gone from taking time off from his previous stroke, so tomorrow I will have the Neurologist fill out an application for Short Term Disability. Come to find out, thanks to my friend Michelle (what a life-saver!) that the state of California is one of only 5 states that helps families financially this way. We are hoping we can work this out.

At the moment Greg is too weak to talk to anyone so I ask to please hold your calls or texts until he feels better. Give him a couple of days. If you have anymore questions, don't hesitate to text me. I prefer the texting right now if only because it's easier to manage for me! Thank you for the kind thoughts and words, they mean a lot.