Rebecca Parr credits the quick action of her family and the Emergency care provided at Union Hospital's Primary Stroke Center for enabling her to survive a potentially devastating stroke.
Rebecca suffered a stroke the day before Thanksgiving in 2015. Her family recognized the warning signs—trouble speaking, drooping smile, loss of strength on one side of her body. Alarmed by the symptoms, her husband Ron called 9-1-1 and within minutes Rebecca was on her way to the Union Hospital Emergency Center.
Emergency physician Dr. Jeff Cameron and the ER staff were prepared when she arrived and immediately implemented the hospital's stroke treatment protocol. A CT scan of Rebecca's brain was made and sent electronically to the Cerebrovascular Center at the Cleveland Clinic. Using the Telemedicine equipment in the ER, the Clinic doctor worked with the Union Hospital staff to evaluate her condition.
Dr. Cameron asked for Ron's consent to use the tissue plasminogen activator, better known as tPA or the "clotbuster" drug. "Within the first 20 minutes of receiving the tPA, I noticed my face was drooping less and I started to get some feeling and movement back," Rebecca said.
Rebecca was transported to the Cleveland Clinic. Doctors there were amazed by her rapid improvement and she was ready to come home after just a few days.
Now Rebecca and Ron Parr are eager to spread the word about the importance of recognizing stroke symptoms and immediate treatment at an Emergency Center. "We hope everybody learns about FAST," said Rebecca.
When talking with Rebecca today, she often says, "I'm very blessed" by the care she received at the Stroke Center at Union Hospital and the recovery she's made.
Each year, approximately 795,000 people suffer a stroke. About 600,000 of these are first attacks, and 185,000 are recurrent attacks.
On average, someone in the United States has a stroke every 40 seconds.
Stroke is the leading cause of death in the US. Each month, 15 to 20 Tuscarawas County residents have a stroke. Act FAST to get them treatment as quickly as possible.
Patients who arrive at the emergency room within three hours of experiencing first signs of symptoms tend to be healthier three months after a stroke than those whose care is delayed.