A woman records her own stroke. In real time. On YouTube.

A woman experienced symptoms of a stroke: facial droop, dysarthria, arm weakness and reduced fine motor control.  She  recorded these symptoms in a real time video, which is now on YouTube.  Several days prior, she experienced similar symptoms that were dismissed by physicians.  After this episode, she was correctly diagnosed with a transient ischemic attack, and now on appropriate medications.  But I agree with Dr. Markku Kaste with the World Stroke Organization: “Don’t waste time on a video, just call 911.”

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  • Paul

    She had already consulted with professionals, and they had dismissed her symptoms. I think she did the right thing.
    I recorded my wife having a tonic clonic seizure one morning at 5am. I have caught no end of grief for filming while I should have been “calling 911″ or something similar. If I had, she would have gone to the ER, had an expensive workup, and nothing would have been found. With the recording, she is now on anticonvulsants and doing better.

  • ninguem

    “A woman records her own stroke. In real time. On YouTube.”

    The body of the article says “she was correctly diagnosed with TRANSIENT ISCHEMIC ATTACK”. And, one would hope, she is being treated appropriately to reduce her chance of getting a real stroke.

    Reminds me of this video from 2011.


    “Reporter Suffers Stroke @ Grammy Awards 2011″

    It was a complex migraine.

  • militarymedical

    According to other reports I’ve read, she did not have a TIA but three successive strokes, with demonstrable damage to brain tissue. That’s bad enough, but for far too many women who are young or in middle years, such symptoms are dismissed as stress, emotions, or hormones in an uproar. A young friend of mine, in her late 20s, had a headache that would not respond to normal OTC treatment, so after two days, she went to an ER (GWU in DC). She had no normal stroke symptoms – slurred speech, facial drooping, limb weakness, etc., but the staff was suspicious anyway. On MRI, she was found to have had a stroke and was immediately admitted to ICU. Later, she had surgery to correct a cerebral A-V malformation and is now fully recovered. Moral: take off the stereotyping glasses and listen to the patient (see also: Abraham Verghese’s TED talk on this subject, posted on KevinMD.com today).

    Personally, I think resorting to a video selfie was brilliant on her part.

  • DeceasedMD1

    So sad not to be believed because that old phrase-GOMER-get out of my ER. know someone with an ocular stroke who presented to teh local academic ER. Arrived well within the 6 hour tx window and left receiving no treatment at all and they let him drive home at night. He is over 90 yo. Then I was walking down the halls of this same facility with an advertisement on CVA’s and how one needs to recognize immediately and go to their ER.

  • SteveCaley

    How terrible – what a terrible thing! The duty of medicine is to discover what is unseen and dangerous to the patient. It is a delight! To have such things be lost is an indictment of our medicine – that the bureaucracy has blinded us.
    I became an internist to satisfy the Steppenwolf, in a sense. There are few other avenues to exhibit a sense of predatory aggression – but in the service of humanity. When there is a story of something obscure, disturbing, suspicious – aha, what is that rustling over there? Let’s get on it, let’s see!
    I have a list of internal medicine diagnoses that I have “bagged,” and many of which were perilous conditions that might have harmed the patient. Guillan-Barre (new diagnosis), Acute intermittent porphyria, first presentation – that can kill you, and quickly. Pheochromocytoma masquerading as PTSD in a Vietnam veteran. Adrenal functioning adenoma, intermittent – masquerading as anxiety disease. To chase and capture a subtle and wily disease, that’s the ultimate joy to an internist; although I’ll take the ones that hit me in the face, the classical and obvious.
    I am sad that Medicine has lost much of that spirit, and has been taken over by bureaucrats and technopaths. Poor Steppenwolf. Here, fill out a form – you think you saw a rabbit? Describe what you saw in sections 3-6, we’ll put you in for a permission to chase it!
    I must say, I enjoy basking in the adulation from a patient for whom I’ve bagged a dangerous condition from their initial complaints. They think I’m a good doctor! So do I! I’ll take that kind of vanity – I seek it!
    Some people call that arrogance. Making new diagnoses is the height of arrogance – if it’s not recorded as such in the medical chart, it doesn’t exist! Who are you to write “pheochromocytoma” in the chart for the first time? What guidelines do you use – who permitted you to use that word?
    We do not reward doctors for being steppenwolves – we reward them for being sheep. That is the new Pay for Performance standard. Don’t suggest anything, don’t make waves. Let the iPhone make your diagnoses for you, or WebMD. Lay low.
    Those who cannot feast occasionally on the joy of self-accomplishment are left to pettiness, mediocrity and ressentiment – the bottom-feeders in the chain. Poor them! but it seems now they rule us. Poor us!

    • DeceasedMD1

      I tell you I needed a laugh. The permission to chase the rabbit really cracked me up. I think these admins are rather threatened by intelligent thought. Actually paranoid.Poor us is right.

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