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Grandma, Hemmorragic Stroke 80 years old... have questions!

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Old 12-20-2012, 12:29 AM   #1
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JamiePFEF HB User
Grandma, Hemmorragic Stroke 80 years old... have questions!

Hi everyone and thanks for taking the time in reading this...

Well my Grandma is very tough, I would like to say right off the bat. She had her first stroke (ischemic) last yr September I believe...the next one happened a week before Thanksgiving of this year, 2012(Ischemic again).

My grandma was rehabilitated after the first one and was living alone and driving again...well when the next stroke hit, she was in the hospital for 5 days and was sent home, with in home rehab and nurses checking up on her. We also hired a 24-7 caregiver to cook her meals and someone to just watch her until she could be on her own. Well my gma was doing well on Thanksgiving, walking and eating...the next couple weeks she started going down hill. Soiling herself, confused, barely able to walk...overall weakness. We at first were thinking depression, but her primary wanted a CT done so we actually had to call an ambulance to get her to the hospital to get that done she was so weak.

Much to our surprise the CT showed a small bleed in her frontal lobe (early Dec 2012) , which did not require surgery. She was alert in the emergency room and everything, could move her hands, and toes. Well they wanted to watch her in the ICU and gave her anti-seizure meds which made her even sleepier than she already was. She also was able to squeeze hands and move toes in ICU as well.

Currently she is in a patient room and can talk, knows who we are, recognizes people on TV...still very sleepy though. She also has a UTI now and is on a puree diet due to mild dysphagia. We are coming to the crossroads of when this UTI is clear when to have her sent. The original plan was too a rehab place; but no the one she went to last stroke as she cannot complete that many hours of rehab, so one was chosen. Now she was recently evaluated again and she isn't responding to commands of squeezing hands, moving arms or legs and isnt tracking well with her eyes. This woman called my mother and was rude and pretty much said...nursing home or home and that my grandma possibly wont get better?


I am outraged and upset...though after researching I feel A "skilled" nursing home is best...I am confused why my gma cannot follow commands if the bleed wasn't that large...I am upset and cry a lot as I love her very much.

I guess my questions are does medicare or insurance cover a skilled nursing home? My grandma has a urinary catheter in and they will put her in a chair once a day. She is so weak and wont move her hands and it worries me...I am so hopeful, but need to hear from encouragement...does anyone have experience with someone who is with it but cant follow commands well?

We'll ask her.."nana can you move your arm, put up two fingers" she says yes...and then she looks like she wants to, but its not happenings...she is not paralyzed what-so-ever she moves her arms and legs when not asked frustrating please give me some words of wisdom..thank you.


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Old 12-20-2012, 08:32 AM   #2
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Re: Grandma, Hemmorragic Stroke 80 years old..have questions!

I am so sorry to say that this is the nightmare of stroke. It was my brother's nightmare, his daughter's, and mine from a distance. His aid told me how he screamed with a catheter, so very painful for a man. Sorry, don't know about who covers what costs since I did not handle them.

What to do? If she can manage with an aide, visiting home nurses, her own home environment, in my view, is best. Use your good judgment. You don't have to do what others tell you, necessarily, or so I think.

We wish her and you the best. The brain is a fantastic organ that can and does heal itself. A strong will and support and optimism go a long way. Stay hopeful and keep us posted.

Old 12-22-2012, 02:36 PM   #3
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Re: Grandma, Hemmorragic Stroke 80 years old..have questions!

I too, am so sorry to hear of your dear grandmothers struggles. Time is a huge factor in stroke recovery, but it seems as if she needs some special care to get her strength and to overcome her present level of response. I have to agree that home is always the most comfortable to be cared for, as long as she can remain safe and have enough time to improve.

Strokes are so hard to deal with for the loved ones, as well as the survivors. I understand how hard it is to go through this difficult time, and I commend you for your concern and interest in getting your grandmother the best of care and love.

Since each individual has such diverse reactions and experience with their strokes, there is never one answer that is always appropriate for everyone.

We all are behind you, and this is a time to have to dig deep inside to find the best answer for your loved one. I wish you the very best.

Old 12-27-2012, 11:42 AM   #4
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Re: Grandma, Hemmorragic Stroke 80 years old... have questions!

Dear Jamie
I am so very sorry to hear about your Grandmother. It is so very hard on family to watch someone they care about suffer from a stroke.
stroke is so difficult to understand because everyone who suffers a stroke is different and yet some symptoms the same.
After a stroke our brains swell. Her poor brain has taken a hit and until the swelling goes down she may be experienceing some symptoms caused by the swelling. One doctor told me the right side of the brain fights with the left side untill swelling goes down and then they return to normal.
Your grandmother may undertand what you are asking her eg. can you lift your arm. however she is unable to carry out the motion. Stroke can cause an interuption of understanding from limb to brain and until it is re-connected it can cause some problems.
In stroke recover especially in the beginning there is a fog ( for lack of a better word) that occurs. we are tired, no energy, sleep alot and the sleep is healing. Every day with encouragement and gentle stimulation we seem to become more aware of our surroundings and it seems the fog clears for part of the day. maybe just an hour or two. If we are asked to do tasks it is not uncommon for us to then need rest. The simplilist of tasks can exhaust us. Some days we feel we are going 3 steps forward and 2 back. But that does not mean we can not move forward. It is shocking to me that they would come to that type of conclution after just one week. Everyone here on the stroke board will tell you they are months and years and still improving. Kind and gentle encouragement is the best thing you can do for your grandmother. Constantly telling her she is going ot be okay she is going ot get well. She is doing great. Tell her to rest that sleep is healing. Sometimes stroke recovery patients can only communicate for a short time in the morning when they first wake and then the fog rolls in.
I tell you honetly it is never over till its over. Demand the best of her, never give up and stay positive. I know the care givers job is especially hard and my heart goes out to you. It is so difficult for family to see someone who has lived a life strong, to be weakened by stroke. But your loving and kind care for her is absolutly the best thing you can do for her. I will keep you in my prayers. Please continue to post. We are here for you.
God Bless Mulchie

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