My healthy dad was feeling strange two weeks ago and went to the doctors. Suddenly he was told he had a heart attack and was taken to the hospital. He was kept overnight and they used a camera to look at his heart. His arteries were 100%, 100% and 80% blocked. After four days of waiting they performed a quadruple bypass which was successful. Two days later, they informed us that he had suffered a significant stroke in the back left side of his brain. When we went to see him he was talking clearly but some of his words didnt make sense. After a day or two his fog cleared. He was understanding everything and speaking normally. It was as if the stroke never happened except for some short term memory issues. Now,just a week after his bypass they want to install a pacemaker. If they do so, they can put him on beta blockers to prevent further stroke. He is still showing effects of the first stroke, and he is just a few days removed from the bypass, so I am scared about the pacemaker. I am a 20 year old guy and I love my dad more than anything. He is only 61 and just a few weeks ago everything was fine. What do you think his chances are for a recovery? I feel as though my life is falling apart. I never imagined this could happen to my family. In your opinion, what do you think is going to happen?
The following user gives a hug of support to Flyersfan1234: growagourd (03-21-2013)
Welcome to our stroke board, we are happy you have found this place, as it can be a great source of support and understanding for you right now.
I can understand how concerned you are, after seeing your dad go through all that he has. As overwhelming stroke is on the survivor, it is equally overwheming to our loved ones, our children in particular. I had my stokes when my youngest son was only 9. My elsdest was 19. They have been my inspiration.
This chain of medical events that has led up to your fathers current situation have been difficult, and I can see how the pacemaker would be appropriate following the quadruple bypass, with all the blockage. Do you know if they were related (the heart and the stroke) ?
I can sense how concerned you are, and I understand that. I love my dad as well. It is shocking when they are suddenly and forever changed. I cannot predict what will happen, but there are some amazing medical interventions that are being done everyday.There never has been a better time to need advanced medical care. Your dad is relatively young, and from what you describe..and responding well so far. If he happens to have a positive attitude, his chances of a good recovery would be even better.
For you, I would remain ultimatley positive, cheering him on and expecting the very best for him. I would convey that message to your dad every chance you get. Stick by him, which I sense you will. Spend some quality time together however you can. As his son, you have great impact on him.
It is nice to hear from the perspective of the children of stroke survivors. I wonder what my son would say? I'll have to ask him. Thank you for wriing in.
You have come to the right place for support. We are all stroke survivors with a multitude of symptoms and stories and big shoulders for those who just need to vent.
I had my second stroke (never knew I had the 1st one until I had the second). My strokes were caused by arterial blockages - left carotid artery blocked 100% and right 65%. Five days after the stroke I was having surgery on my left carotid to clear the blockage. I can tell you that having surgery after an event such as stroke or heart attack is a huge trauma to the body. Fortunately, your father is young. As for what deficits he will have from the stroke,, time will tell. I too had a left-brain stroke and I'm still not sure what the final package is. Like your father, I am young for all of this at 55 and I have two daughters, 23 and 19, who share your fears and concerns.
It seems like your father is in good hands. Don't worry about the pacemaker! First of all, it is minimally invasive surgery and second, it's like a safety back-up to make sure his heart beat stays regular. He has been through a lot so don't be surprised if he sleeps a lot. We heal when we sleep. I still sleep about 12 hours a night. Listen when he talks about all of his weird symptoms because things change daily. It will also help you to understand what he's going through.
As for you, I wish I could put my arms around you and tell you that everything will be okay. As the parent it broke my heart to see my daughters and husband so upset. Your world has been turned upside down. It's okay to be scared and don't be afraid to admit it. I think it's awesome that you turned to this board for support. You are a good son who obviously care so much.
Remember this - your father has gone through two life threatening events and he survived! All of us here are survivors, or family of survivors. You may even want to share what you've done with your father, because when he feels up to it he may find support here too! We laugh,we complain, we feel sorry for ourselves, and we support each other because we understand.
Your father should be very proud of you. Feel free to post anytime, even with simple questions. We're here for you too. Please excuse any spelling or grammatical errors. My brain needs a nap after all this typing.
Sue made so many great points, with her direct experience with bypass and stroke.
I made it a point to talk to my son about his feelings about my strokes, now that he is able to look back. He said he was scared as a nine year old but impressed now. Stroke recovery becomes the ultimate goal, and in the process, many of us have shared that we have become better people for it. While no one would choose it, the ability for us to fight our way back is very rewarding in the long run. I did not do it alone, my family was right there, my friends, but most of all my sons.