Interview 14

Age at interview: 66

Brief outline: She had a stroke due to a hemorrhage aged 60, which caused left paralysis, spasms, central post stroke pain (CPSP) and depression. Medication' bendrofluazide (blood pressure), simvastatin (cholesterol), fluoxetine (depression), gabapentin (CPSP).

Background: Is a widowed retired legal secretary with no children. Ethnic background' White/English.

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This woman had a stroke at the age of 60 she is now 66. The stroke was due to haemorrhage in the brain caused by high blood pressure. She had previously been unaware of her high blood pressure and urges others to get theirs checked.

Her stroke caused paralysis in her arm and leg and she had intensive rehabilitation in a stroke unit to get the use of her arm back and to help her to walk. She found it helpful to set and work towards goals during her rehabilitation, for example, working towards going out of the hospital for a coffee. She continued to set and work towards goals when she got home and has been able to achieve things like doing the garden and going to the shops on foot or on the bus.

She is now able to walk and use her hands, however the main problem that she has been left with is chronic central post stroke pain which she feels in her leg. The pain can sometimes take over her life. She has tried different medication but has had problems with side effects with one type and lack of effectiveness with another. She finds the most helpful thing is to keep her legs warm or to have a warm shower. She has attended a pain management clinic but has still not found the solution for her pain, however, she never gives up hope.

She attended a stroke group through the hospital which she found very helpful. She feels that there should be more support available for people as they leave hospital as she found it difficult to adjust.

Her friends and family were a great support after her stroke. She also got a lot of comfort from her dog who is a constant companion.


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