Augusta, GA -- Terry Morrison, Mary's husband: "We were having lunch at Chick-Fil-A. I noticed Mary started having a little bit of difficulty speaking and when I looked at her closely, I could tell she had a slight draw in her mouth. We went to Doctors Hospital first. They ran numerous tests and finally ran an MRI which confirmed she had a slight stoke."
Jeannie Morrison Williams, Mary's daughter: "That's not something we ever anticipated...you hear the word and you're not sure what that means for your family."
Matt Morrison, Mary's son: "When we got the phone call from my sister, to let us know that my mom was at MCG, we were very worried...not sure what was going on."
Mary Morrison: "I spent Mother's Day weekend here in the Neurointensive Care Unit at MCG Health, I was hooked up to monitors and an IV...awaiting more tests. Doctors wanted to find out what caused my stroke and how to prevent another one."
Dr. David Hess is the chairman of the Department of Neurology at MCGHealth.
Dr. David Hess, MCGHealth: "You're generally very healthy...but then a lot of people with stroke can be healthy."
Mary: "And unfortunately...what happened to me is not rare! We live in the Stroke Belt. Strokes are much more common in the Southeast and happen to women more often than men."
Dr. Hess: "Your stroke was a very common type called a lacune. Lucunar strokes are small, generally less than a Centimeter in size. There's a lot of people with silent lacuner strokes. For every stroke you see, there are five under the water. All we do is see the tip of the iceberg."
Mary: "I had all the usual tests. They did a scan of my carotid arteries, which were nice and clear. What a relief! My blood pressure was perfectly normal, just weeks before the stroke...but an echocardiogram (EKG) at MCG showed signs of past hypertension...and LDL Cholesterol was high."
Dr. Hess: "We like to see it below 100...yours was 150."
Mary: "I was also taking a Celebrex for joint pain."
Dr. Hess: "In your case, I don't think it caused it, but could have been a contributing factor? Perhaps."
Mary: "So, the doctor took me off Celebrex and put me on Lipitor to lower my cholesterol, plus a low dose blood pressure medicine and low dose aspirin. The 'episode', as I like to call it, was a real eye opener..."
Dr. Hess: "It shows that even healthy people like yourself, who are not conventional stroke patients, can have a stroke..."
Mary: "A stroke that left me with a mild disability that I would need help to overcome."
Mary wanted us to be sure and thank everyone for their concern over the past few weeks, and we can happily report that she will be back on the anchor desk for Good Morning Augusta on Thursday morning.
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