Discussions By Condition: Nerve conditions

Anyone ~ After Effects of Major Stroke

Posted In: Nerve conditions 2 Replies
  • Posted By: FixMEdoc
  • March 9, 2007
  • 07:50 AM

My husband's grandfather suffered a minor & major stroke on Monday- Paralysis on one side.

Yesterday, he suffered a second "major" stroke.

Last night, his grandmother was given the choice to take him off life support, after a brain scan showed that there was no activity. Though she knows that he doesn't want to be kept alive for an extended period of time on life support, it's always a hard call to commit to.

What's keeping her from making that call, is that she says he "smiled" yesterday, when his son said something inteded to be funny, and he "squeezed" her hand today, with his hand that is on the side that was not controlled by the side of his brain affected by the stroke.

I know that my father wanted to believe that his mother was "smiling" or "grimacing" as a response to her environment, just before she passed, but the Dr. assured him that these were only neurological reflexes.

If anyone has some knowledge on a possible prognosis, or has been in a similar situation, that may be able to share some insight, she asked that my husband find out...and, he asked that I ask "all of you", to see if we could have some information to share with her.

Thanks so Much!

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2 Replies:

  • Oops apparently I left out an important part. He also lifted his arm up at the elbow and massaged her neck.
    FixMEdoc 53 Replies Flag this Response
  • If the EEG showed no brain activity, then that usually means "brain dead" in simple terms. You have to look at what kind of quality of life will he have? To suffer 2 major strokes would usually make one a complete vegetative state often requiring a gastrostomy tube and nursing home care or private home care. I have taken care of people exactly like this in the nursing home. They often get bed sores from being bed-ridden. In my own opinion, I would have to look at what kind of measures he would want me to take? Would he want to live like this? or Would he rather go the far more better place ~ Heaven and live in peace and comfort? It can be a very huge burden on the families (that I've seen) in having to care for them and pay for their care. Even if he can move some, he would not be able to care for himself. Also, things like the smiling and grimicing are reflexes of brain injury. I know this is sad, but I have seen a lot of patients suffer from family keeping their loved ones alive, not for the family member but for themselves. Like I said, what would he want?
    GaNurse 23 Replies Flag this Response
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