One mother has said she had “absolutely no idea” she was seriously ill before her husband saved her life on their wedding day.
Catherine Fahey, 34, says she feels “lucky to be alive” after husband Kyle spotted the tiniest sign in bed that she was having a potentially fatal stroke.
WATCH THE VIDEO ABOVE: Man’s quick action saves his wife who has had a stroke.
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Quick-thinking Kyle, 34, took his wife with a fireman over his shoulder and took her to the nearest hospital in the family car – after being told an ambulance would take two hours.
The mother and fitness enthusiast was lying in bed asleep in the early hours of September 19 – the couple’s 13th anniversary – when her husband, a maintenance technician, noticed something seriously was wrong.
At 1 a.m. he woke his wife to tell her the kids were in bed.
However, he noticed that her mouth had sagged significantly on the left side and her speech was slurred.
Acting quickly, he carried his wife into her car and sped to her local hospital in the British city of Lincoln.
Doctors informed the couple that Catherine was having a stroke and administered vital medications that work most effectively within the first four-hour window.
“Kyle saved my life”
Due to Kyle’s quick actions, Catherine only spent two days in the hospital and made a miraculous recovery – which stunned the doctors treating her.
“Kyle absolutely saved my life — and also on our wedding anniversary,” said Catherine, a university administrator.
“It’s just amazing how he knew. We’ve been together since we were 19 and we’re getting married when we’re 21, so I feel like he knows me so well.
“If anyone else was around, they wouldn’t have known the way Kyle did.
“It means to the world what he did for me.”
Catherine was having a quiet family evening at home – watching The Lion King with children Alfie, 14, and Bella, 11.
“I went to bed and Kyle followed me not long after,” she said.
“I’ve been to the toilet before and felt fine.
“He turned on the light and started talking to me only to tell me both kids were in bed.
“He asked if I was okay, but as soon as I answered he definitely knew something was wrong.
“I had absolutely no idea. In my head, I thought I was good at speaking and acting, but I wasn’t.”
Kyle asked his wife to stand up and stretch both arms out in front of her.
“But I had no mobility on my left side,” Catherine said.
“I even tried drinking water but it just fell out of my mouth.”
Kyle had known what to do because he had recently seen public notices about the signs of a stroke.
Desperate, he called 911 at 1 a.m., suspecting his wife was having a stroke.
After being told there was a two-hour wait for an ambulance, the doting husband jumped into action.
“He literally had to lift me from the fire station down the stairs and into the car,” Catherine explained.
“We had to leave the kids behind but luckily Alfie is old enough to take care of Bella while we were away.
“He just told them we had to do something and we’d be back soon. He didn’t want to worry her.
“When we got to the ER, Kyle just parked the car and didn’t realize he was in the ambulance bay.
“He ran to get a nurse and when I saw her face I knew something was really wrong.”
After an immediate CT scan, doctors confirmed what Kyle suspected – Catherine was having a stroke.
She was admitted to the intensive care unit and received life-saving medication within an hour.
“Fortunately, the doctors were able to treat me very quickly because he acted so quickly,” she said.
“I wasn’t really scared, but I was so confused.
“I saw Kyle was upset and the nurse said to him, ‘It’s all up to her now – how she recovers.’ I just gave it my all.
“Looking back, I never thought I wouldn’t be able to walk anymore, I’m really stubborn.”
Within a few hours her condition improved significantly and after the fourth hour she was able to walk again.
Miraculously, she made an amazing recovery and was discharged just two days later.
“My mouth is still a bit saggy on the left side and I have some blurry vision,” she said.
“But I was completely released from physiotherapy and speech therapy.
“I’ve been on cholesterol pills and blood thinners for life, and because my vision is blurry I now have to wear glasses.
“I can’t push myself as hard as I used to when I’m training and I’ve been advised to make sure I’m not alone when I run.
“I have to keep an eye on my pulse zones even when I’m exercising.”
Doctors were stunned by Catherine’s case due to her age and dedication to fitness.
Both she and Kyle compete in Spartan races – steeplechase races ranging from 5K to marathon distances – and should both represent Team GB at the European Championships on October 8th.
“I have to go to the hospital for follow-up, but we may never find a cause,” she said.
“I’ve been having some stress at work lately and they said it might be related.
“I’ve realized that work stress just isn’t worth it. Your health is the most important thing.”
Despite her prognosis, Catherine is still learning to cope with life after a stroke.
“Sometimes I get very frustrated,” she says.
“I feel pretty down sometimes, especially when people tell me what I can’t do, but I’m also very grateful.
“It could have been a lot worse.”
She’s now trying to raise awareness of the signs of a stroke and says her husband knows what to do because he saw a recent health promotion.
“Kyle absolutely saved my life and I love him more than ever for it,” she said.
In Australia, the Stroke Foundation aims to “prevent stroke, save lives and improve recovery” by “raising awareness, promoting research and supporting stroke survivors”.
As a calculator ready, the foundation suggests looking out for the following signs of a stroke, summarized as RAPID:
- FACE – stuck?
- ARMS – can not be raised?
- LANGUAGE – slurred or confused?
- TIME – is crucial. call 000
In November, the foundation hosts its annual Stride4Stroke event and encourages people to get active – one of the ways to reduce the risk of stroke.
https://7news.com.au/lifestyle/health-wellbeing/tiny-bedtime-detail-was-sign-of-deadly-diagnosis-in-mum-who-felt-fine-absolutely-no-idea-c-8790279 Tiny bedtime detail was a sign of fatal diagnosis in mother who was fine: ‘Absolutely no idea’