Survivor Wants You to Know About Stroke
Lori Wier felt off when she woke up one morning in mid-December 2015. She remembers having a “sleepy feeling” on the left side of her body and some slurred speech. But she passed it off, figuring she just slept wrong.
The Sturgeon Bay woman drove to Green Bay to run errands before sitting down in her music studio that afternoon. Lori is a violin and viola instructor.
“When I sat down to play my violin, my left hand was not functioning. There’s a special technique to it, and I couldn’t get my hand to do it,” she says.
That’s when Lori realized something was wrong. She called her husband, and he took her to their local hospital. When a CAT scan came back normal, they sent her to Aurora BayCare. That evening, she had her diagnosis: Stroke.
A stroke is caused by a clot that interrupts blood flow to the brain that can damage brain cells or cause permanent disability.
Stroke: An Early Warning Sign
The night before, Lori had no way of knowing she was about to have a stroke.
Any sign of a stroke warrants a call to 911 and an immediate visit to the emergency room. The symptoms of stroke include:
- Numbness or weakness, usually on one side of the body
- Sudden confusion
- Slurred speech
- Sudden vision problems
- Dizziness or lack of balance
“I didn’t know what the warning signs were,” Lori says. “I didn’t realize something was seriously wrong.”
Underlying Risk Factors
Lori has made a full recovery from her stroke. But she continues to work with her doctor to monitor her health and manage any underlying risk factors, including high blood pressure and high cholesterol.
She’s sharing her story to help educate others on the signs of stroke and encourage them to get immediate help. She also wants to share a few good words about the care she received at Aurora BayCare.
“I can’t say enough about the staff,” she says. “The nurses are so genuine. And Dr. Darkhabani and his team were so easy going. They made me feel comfortable and answered all of my questions. Even the chaplain came to visit me. Together, they kept me from feeling frightened.”
Image courtesy of Tom Groenfeldt.