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Subarachnoid haemorrhage


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I had a SAH on 8th October, 2009. I had been to work, picked up my little boy from his afterschool care group on the way home and was sitting sorting odd socks would you believe. I can't remember picking him up and said a few weeks later I was just glad that none of the kids were at home when it happened - at which point someone mentioned that James was in the house.

My eldest daughter who was 20 was on her way home from work - her dad rang her and asked her where she was and told her to hurry up as he had just rang an ambulance for me - at which point she ran from our local metro station and was there within minutes. My second daughter was at the cinema with her friends and my third daughter was at her dance class.

Anyway, as I said, I was sitting on the end of the settee going through the odd sock bag when I had the most horrendous headache. It was like nothing I have ever experienced before. I shouted for my husband to come and see me and he just said "I cant come I am busy". I told him that I didnt care what he was doing as I had the most horrendous headache and I was frightened I was going to have a brain haemorrhage - not really thinking that I would but it was the only thing I could attribute that much pain to. He came through and I just said I am sure if I can just get upstairs and lie on the bed I will be fine. I stood up and he stood up to support me and try to get me up the stairs but I just fell to the floor. He managed to get me back onto the settee and from then on it is all a bit of a blur. He asked me did I want him to call an ambulance and up til that point I insisted I didn't want him to 'cos I didn't want to waste their time. I then started vomiting and knew something was seriously wrong and i just told him to ring for an ambulance. An ambulance car came first and apparently I seemed to go into some sort of trance like state - I couldnt (or wouldnt) talk, my eyes were rolling back in my head and David and Nicola both just said it was really scary. The ambulance girl from the car rang for a proper ambulance but i think she gave me some drugs by injection - but I really cant remember. The proper ambulance came and took me to our local hospital (where I work) and all I can remember is being pushed to the x-ray department and then going into the CT scanner. Apparently i was there for a couple of hours (at that hospital not in the CT scanner) and then I was transferred to the Regional Neurosciences Centre at Newcastle General Hospital and taken to an ordinary ward. I have no recollection of any of this and apparently I had coiling embolisation surgery the next morning. The Consultant rang my husband and asked for consent as they had just done an angiogram and I was in the theatre where they would do it so rather than wait for him they took his consent verbally. I was then taken to HDU (this was Friday) and was moved to an ordinary ward on either the Sunday night or the Monday morning.

Following that, I apparently suffered vasospasm and couldn't talk or move down one side. They could tell that I wanted to talk by my eyes but nothing would come out. I was transferred back to HDU where I spent the next week but I think I must have been totally out of it cos I just cant remember anything. Apparently though one of my friends came to see me and she asked me if I wanted her to talk to me. I asked her did she have anything interesting to say and she said well not really so I told her not to bother!!!! I think I have lost my tact and diplomacy!!!

After the vasospasm i had to be taken back to theatre for them to do something or other (not sure what). I can remember waking up in the x-ray room and looking around but wasn't really sure where I was.

I spent the next week on HDU but cant really remember anything about it - apparently my daughter was feeding me a salad (closest she has ever come to vegetables) and I was irritated cos she wasn't feeding me it quick enough (I do eat very fast) but I cant remember this either (big shock).

When I went back to the normal ward I had to be put into a cubicle as I had diarrhoea (which was not pleasant when they came to clean it up) and I spent about 4 days in there. While there physio came and got me up to go for a walk. I remember walking along the corridor and I must have sensed that David was behind me. I turned round and he said "well come back to me Linford (as in Christie) and I fell over. They had to bring my bed to me and use a hoist to get me up. I spent the rest of the day on oxygen!!

I then moved back to the normal part of the ward - where I was the fittest person!!!! I did think I could do more than I should so in the middle of one night i needed the toilet. Instead of ringing for the nurse or a commode I decided I would walk to the toilet. I fell over again (but it was midnight and the staff didnt see me) but I went to pull myself up on a linen trolley. One of the other patients on the ward said "Dont pull yourself up on that cos it has wheels on it". I crawled over to the ward sink and pulled myself up on that instead and then walked to the toilet. On the Monday the Consultant came to see me and said as far as he was concerned i could go home - but he would have to check with the ward staff who just said - no way - she isn't mobile enough. I finally got out on the Friday.

I have always been a very independent person and it is driving me mad how much my husband wont let me do. I am not allowed to drive and feel like my independence has been taken away from me. I feel so bored and frustrated.

I am desperate to get back to work and was planning on going back at the beginning of January but I have to go back in on 4th January for further surgery as there is an unruptured aneurysm apparently. I am not looking forward to it but dont thinkI could cope if I had to go through the headache that I had last time. Once that is over it is the start of the rest of my life and it has to be better than the last 10 years - cos it certainly couldnt get any worse.

Hopefully I will be back at work at the beginning of February.

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Hi Ann, and welcome to the site,your story sounds very similar to my wifes,she also had an sah, 2 annis one coiled one clipped, and as you state it's panic stations for a while,my wife was a very independant person also, and i also fussed around quite a lot, (and still do 9 months on) i think i do it because i , see the need is there or maybe it's because we realise how fragile we all can be. I think your ordeal affects everyone around youand each must be understanding of the other, but you sound as though you are getting on really well , i must admit february sound a very early return to work to me, but i'm sure when that time comes you will know whether you are ready or not, thanks for posting your story Best wishes to you and your family in your recovery and i really do hope you have a great 2010, Rod

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Hi Anne

Welcome to the site.

This site is full of very friendly and helpful people. There is usually more of us on daily but with the holidays it's quite quiet.

I too am a very independent person and found it hard at first having to have so much done for me. But it gets better in time and I am now as independent as I want to be. I too work in our local hospital but am quite shocked by the lack of knowledge and understanding they have for this condition. My manager (a former sister) was really surprised to hear(from me on my return to work) that I actually had an operation!!

When I was told I would be off work for at least 3 months, my first thought was, right "I'll" be back at work in May! I returned to work at the start of December!

I had to learn to not put this kind of pressure on me. You have been through a lot. You need to give your body time to heal. However, we are all different and our recovery times are different.

Good luck for the 4th, yes I an understand not wanting this headache again!

Take care of yourself and please let us know how you are doing when you are up to it.

Enjoy the new year celebrations.

Liz xx

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Hi Anne

Thanks for sharing your story and welcome to this site.

I had my SAH on 1 October 2004 and returned to work part-time in the April of 2005. It took me a total of 15 months to get back to full time and doing my old job. I'd advise you not to rush things, listen to your body and take each day as it comes. You are still very early in your recovery.

I too have an untreated second anni, which is too small to do anything with but it is being monitored still by a yearly angiogram. Good luck with your appointment on the 4th.

Kim

X

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Hi Anne

A warm welcome to BTG. Sounds like you have had a rough time of it, loss of independence is probably the worse thing but its good that your husband is keeping an eye on you. Its so tempting in the first few months to overdo things and then the dreaded fatigue attacks and sets back your recovery. It took me several months to return to work and thats was on a phased return, it may be best to be guided by your Neurosurgeon/ G.p as to returning.

Good luck for your procedure on the 4th hope everything goes well for you. Any questions you have just ask there is always someone who can help. Look forward to hearing more from you.

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hi anne

welcome to btg your story has a hell of a roller coaster ride and you have done very well so far and the family have gone through and supported you after such a shock it might be nice if they also joined as we support both victims and family because they also have a story to tell and may have need to let it all out which i did under my darling lin in carers support everyone here has gone through what you are going through i wish you well for the fourth but also worried you are pushing yourself to much and by doing so much may slow your recovery down hubby is right in what he is doing its called love please take note of what is doing he wants you around for a lot longer .

you may have been independent before and you will be in the future but for now take it easy please let your body decide how fast you can take things otherwise your body will revolt and say slow down anne

take some me time and reassess your future and take it slowly otherwise david will smack your bum you may have changed in how you treat people its something you have no control over but in time this may correct yourself but hey they will have to get used to the new you getting the other anni done is good then you can take one day at a time by all means hope you can go back by the end of feb but dont fret if it takes longer please have some you time think and enjoy the enforced rest just take care speak to you soon hugs and cuddles

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Hello Anne and welcome to Behind the Gray, a good place to be I promise:-DAs others have said don't push too hard,take things as they come and I bet like us all you will have to rein yourself in, I think most of us want to run before we can walk. Let your body tell you when it's ready it will know;-) The important thing is to let things be, don't let yourself get too worked up if you think you could be doing more and above all don't push.....it just doesn't work. Brain injury is very serious and takes a while but we do recover which is the best bit;-) Look forward to hearing more

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A very warm welcome to BTG :-D you are doing so well and should be so proud of yourself....but as the others have said please take your time and go gently.... listen to your body....look forward to hearing more from you...love Tina xx

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Hi Anne,

Welcome to BTG!! I can understand the frustration of not being able to do things but please don't push yourself too hard. I too wanted to get back to work as soon as I could and I still remember my first day. It all felt so surreal and I really wasn't well enough to be there. I work in sales in a retail floorcovering store and to top it all of I got the customer from hell for my first customer. I did a gradual return to work , only working 4 hours a day for 3 days a week and have slowly increased it. I am now working 9-5, 3 days a week and I think that I have reached my limit. I work Wed - Fri and by Fri I have had enough and look forward to the next 4 days of recouperation. When I look back on how I was initially I have come a long way in the past 6 months and I fully expect it to be a while before I am feeling anywhere near where I was before the SAH.

I wish you well in your recovery and look forward to seeing you around BTG.

Hugs

Debbie

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  • 2 weeks later...

Hi Anne

I thought I'd replied to your post but apparently not:roll:.

Welcome to the site and to the family - this is a great place for advice and support - so feel free to ask anything you like - no matter how silly you may think it is, believe me there will be some one who knows how you feel or has had a similar experience.

Take care

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