Woman credits immediate care for her survival

co-owner of the Premiere Oaks 10 Theater in Melbourne, credits Health First Neurosciences with saving her life after a massive stroke.

Stephanie just didn’t feel right after a walk on the beach. So, she decided to rest in bed for a few minutes, suspecting her piercing headache might be dehydration. But, when she tried to reach for a bottle of water, she couldn’t. The right side of Stephanie’s body was paralyzed. She was gripped with terror, thinking about the pact she’d made to herself after losing her husband six years prior – a pact to get her three children to self-sufficiency in the aftermath of losing their father.

“Well,” Stephanie recalled thinking. “This is it.”

If she hadn’t been able to summon help from her daughter and get to Health First’s Holmes Regional Medical Center, it very well could have been it. But the Neurosciences team at the Melbourne hospital was able to quickly respond, providing her the crucial care she needed at that critical moment. Her care team recognized a massive clot was responsible, quickly performing a thrombectomy and administering intravenous tPA, which dissolves blood clots. Stephanie was able to make a miraculous recovery.

Today, she is alive and well and hoping her story will inspire others to never ignore troubling symptoms. “Don’t delay,” Stephanie urged. “Don’t sit there. Don’t do the ‘wait-and-see’ approach. Even if one person hears this and thinks, ‘Oh, if I go to Holmes, and they do what they did for that lady…’”

Stephanie had been expecting permanent speech loss and paralysis. She was just hoping to survive the stroke. “I didn’t know that help was just around the corner, and that the professionals at Holmes Regional would not only save my life but reverse all of the damage that had come on so suddenly,” Stephanie said. “Within hours, I went from being paralyzed and unable to speak, to back to normal – good as new.”