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677292 tn?1226291236

14 year old Daughter with stroke like symptoms

My Daughter is now 14 years old, 3 years ago she was taken by Ambulance to Hospital with right sided weakness, slurred speech, facial droop and post several collapses. At the time she exhibited some signs and symptoms that pointed towards stroke, but her story just didn't necessarily gel altogether (I'm an ex Paramedic). Unfortunately my Daughter at times struggles with the truth, she lives with my ex wife in another State. The end result that time after a battery of tests, including CT's and MRI's was that nothing showed up, my Daughter's symptoms resolved after 2-3 weeks and life progressed. Today 3 years later the same thing has occurred inclusive of facial droop, numbness to one side of her face, right sided weakness, slurred speech and I'm now awaiting results from the attending Doctors at the Hospital, where she has been admitted.

My Daughter has been under a lot of stress lately as her School has demanded a much bigger effort for the last Month of School here to assess whether she should go up a level next year. She doesn't exactly enjoy the best of health with repeated chest infections, ear infections etc and the fact that she also smokes (condoned by the Mother) doesn't help. Now to further muddy the water let me tell you that my Daughter is adopted and her biological Mother at age 18 suffered a severe stroke and took some years to regain speech, mobility etc
I'm looking for some answers here, as I'm just struggling with 1. If the event is real or fiction. 2. Can a stroke or similar event unfold without being able to be picked up via CT or MRI, 3. Is there something here that we're all missing in her assessment? 4. I hate casting doubt as to the veracity of my Daughter's story but history has in the past shown that although I Love her implicitly, she can't always be trusted
6 Responses
534785 tn?1329595808
They might be transient ischemic attacks (TIAs), also known as "mini-strokes". Typically, these aren't found on an MRI and may not even show up on a CT scan of the head, especially if the episode only lasted a few seconds or minutes (they can last up to several hours, at which point some irreversible damage to the brain is done).

The standard for diagnosing these is based upon the symptoms the patient described they experienced, clinical evaluation, an echocardiogram (to rule out an embolic source), an ultrasound of the carotid arteries in the neck (to rule out stenosis), and then a whole barrage of bloodwork--including C-reactive protein and erythrocyte sedimentation rate. Has your daughter had any of this done? Doctors will also tell a patient believed to have suffered a TIA to begin taking aspirin daily, a preventative measure.

If she suffered an actual stroke, it is likely there would be some evidence on the MRI/CT scans. TIAs aren't so easy to diagnose, and they're considered "warning signs", meaning that the likelihood of a patient who experienced one or more TIAs to have an actual stroke is much higher than it was prior to the TIA(s).

Sometimes partial seizures can mimic a stroke, depending on which part of the brain it is occurring in. During a partial seizure, the patient is fully conscious and is usually capable of remembering everything that happened, even after the seizure ends. This might be worth looking into.

She's fourteen years old, and smoking? That's very sad to hear...not only because she is so young, but also because that is terrible for her health and could potentially be contributing to the situation at hand.

Just my thoughts. I wish you and your daughter well--please keep me posted on how it all goes.
677292 tn?1226291236
Hi Jules,

Thanks for your comment and advice. Yes the prospect of them being T'IA's is a real one and Hosp. Staff seem in two minds as to whether it's actually this or has more of a psychological basis, they're actually strongly suggestive of it being a Conversion Disorder. The general reluctance we have in acknowledging them as TIA's is that Trisha's symptoms don't last for seconds, minutes or even hours, but 3-5 days at a time.

I'm unsure if she had an echocardiogram or ultrasound done, Trish did have extensive blood work done, but my understanding is that they all came back with no abnormality detected. Interestingly enough they have put her on aspirin daily, though compliance is an issue here, so I'm guessing the Hospital at least is covering their bases,

It's difficult for Marion and I as we live interstate approx. 5 hours away, Communication between Trish and us is happening but strained,as we've expressed our horror that Trish continues to perhaps risk her very life by her poor choices as she's now had possibly 2 cerebral events in less than 3 years, and she refuses to acknowledge the risk other than to say she's cautious (whatever that means) and give up smoking.

It's of NO use trying to talk with my ex as she's VERY defensive of her "Mothering skills" and sees nothing wrong in providing either cigarettes or money to purchase them. This would be the same woman who when Trisha was 12 purposely gave her wine until she was so drunk she collapsed unconscious ("to teach Trisha a lesson").

So given that Trisha has been smoking since age 12 & sexually active as well since then, mine, my Wife Marion and my Son Leigh (22 yo) have little influence over what transpires within their house, even though Trish looks up to Leigh and he's lived with them for 6 months (now moving out due to volatile nature of the accepted house standards).

So it's a wait and see from our perspective, although I'm now forced into contacting Child Protective Services to see if they can at least influence the "parenting" that doesn't happen within the custodial Home.
675316 tn?1234218695
i had that happen to me it was bells palsy might not of spelled that right where half my face just quit working . its thought to come fromsome kind of infection but u might look into it
677292 tn?1226291236
Hi thanks for your input, but no it's not Bells Palsy, the symptoms have resolved and Trish is now back at School. The Hospital have hung their hat on Trish having a condition known as Conversion Disorder whereby the patient experiences real physiological symptoms but they have a psychological basis brought on a lot of the time by stress or trauma
675316 tn?1234218695
wow thats interesting maybe thats my problem . how do they fix it ?
677292 tn?1226291236
Psychological help & GOOD parenting from Trisha's custodial "Mother", I'm hopeful the psychological help will assist but I believe there's NO hope of Trisha's "Mother" ever knowing how to be a decent parent.

So time will tell, my Wife and I can do is parent from afar, but from what we hear the problems within the home environment are huge. Despite that Trisha refuses to live with us.
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