Wednesday, February 19, 2014


One thing that never ceases to frustrate me at work is when people see a loved one with OBVIOUS symptoms of a stroke, and yet wait to call for hours or often days. A stroke can either be a clot in the brain or an aneurysm, and the former is very treatable - if treated within the first 4 -5 hours. 

Symptoms include weakness or paralysis on one side of the body, arm drift, facial droop (think Jean Chretien's droopy mouth), slurred speech and confusion, for example. How can somebody see Grandma go from coherent and mobile to drooling and paralysed and NOT see that something is wrong? I had one who was curled in bed all day, covered in urine and not making any sense, and they waited 2 days before calling for help. Something like that doesn't just 'get better', and now your sweet little Grandma will be a permanent vegetable. 

I wish taking a first aid class was mandatory for everyone, as common sense obviously isn't. Until then, I will continue to see these poor people with previously-reversible symptoms that will now be suffering the consequences of their family's incompetence for the rest of their shortened lives.