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Interview 50

Age at interview: 66
Brief Outline: He had a stroke at the aged 58 due to a clot and then a second stroke 1 year later due to a haemorrhage. Medication' perindopril, bendroflumethiazide, prazosin (blood pressure), aspirin (antiplatelet), (stopped due to haemorrhage).
Background: Is divorced with 3 children. He is a retired credit controller. Ethnic background/nationality' Black/ African.

More about me...

He had his first stroke at the age of 58 he is now 66. The first stroke was due to a clot. He had a relatively rare operation to remove the clot. This is usually only performed because the clot is blocking the flow of blood around the brain. 

At the time of his first stroke he was given aspirin to prevent further clots forming, however one year later he had a second stroke due to a haemorrhage and has stopped taking the aspirin. He takes perindopril, bendroflumethiazide and prazosin to control blood pressure. The cause of his first stroke was probably high blood pressure which he was being treated. He, however thinks that his drinking may have contributed to this. Since the stroke he has given up alcohol and tries to live a healthier lifestyle.

The strokes have caused weakness of the left side of his body. After the second stroke he was in hospital for several months and was giving help to get mobile again and perform daily task. He is now able to walk and look after himself but lives with his brother for extra support.

On his return home he had some help from occupational therapy who provided him with a bath seat and rail and took him out on the bus to help him become more confident. He has also attended a support group but mainly for the exercises. 

 

His religious faith has helped him come to terms with his stroke.

His religious faith has helped him come to terms with his stroke.

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Why do you think? What has helped you?

Because if you have faith and obviously if something happens, you've got to accept nature. This is nature. You've got to help yourself and nature will help you but if you sit tight, then you haven't got a chance. So I go myself, my mind, no, it shouldn't happen to me. It can happen but at least it has happened so I have to fight this battle myself. This fight is what I do my will to live, my will to do something. That's why I'm here. Other than that, I don't think I could have made it.  

When you said if you have faith, do you mean religious faith?

Yes.

And that has made the difference?

That makes a lot of difference, yes.

And are there religious people who have been in any way involved in?

Oh yeah. When I was, when I was in hospital, they used to come there, a lot of people used to come there, encourage you, encourage you, as preacher, you know that they do. 

 

Being accompanied on the bus by rehabilitation staff gave him confidence to use them by himself.

Being accompanied on the bus by rehabilitation staff gave him confidence to use them by himself.

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Yeah, yeah. They, they had to, the nurses, they brought me home in, with a, a wheelchair. They had, later on, they came and took the wheelchair away when they realised that I was alright because they were visiting me all the time. All the time. And when I was, I was able to walk around they sent me the nurse who used to come here, a young man, and used to go out with me to ride in a bus and see the people's reaction. So every morning they used to come and we take 76 bus, just sit down, we sit down with me and we talking and see how people react to people with a situation like me because some of them when you go and sit near them, they don't want to know. Ooooh, I shift away from you. You feel so embarrassed but you know you are sick, it wasn't like that before, so you don't care and the, the nurse wants to ride with me and every morning they come and take me and we go for a bus ride to get my confidence back and I did indeed. I owe him a lot. So they did help me.

And so now do you go out and go on the bus on your own?

Yeah, I do, yeah. I do it without my stick unless I go somewhere, then I will take it but I don't, I don't even use the stick now. 

 

It's up to you to fight it and to help yourself.

It's up to you to fight it and to help yourself.

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It could happen to anybody but it's up to you to fight it when it comes because if you don't, if it comes and you don't decide, because I had a chap who was my friend in the hospital, I didn't know him until we met in hospital and because he was ill, he didn't even want to go to the loo or he want the nurses to help ever time 'Nurse nurse' things like that, you're not helping yourself. So when he's shouting nurse, I said, 'Why don't you?' he said, 'I can't, [name], I can't'. I said, 'Try. You're like me but when you try to go, want to use the loo' and he say, 'But you fall down'. You see. But if you don't help yourself, I don't think you, whatever medication they give you, they can't help you. Only self believe that because he can't do this, he can't do that, don't have to bring tea to him all the time. You understand what I mean? So you have to fight it yourself. That's what I meant over there. It helped me a lot.

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