Heather Zinns

First post: Jan 13, 2011 Latest post: Aug 6, 2022
This CaringBridge was created for Heather Beth Zinns (Dragstra).  It's sole purpose is to update her family and friends on her healthcare journey. The start of this all began on Sunday January 2, 2011.  Heather awoke with an intensely painful headache that resulted in her crying because the pain was so great.  After about 7 hours of pain the headache began to subside.  On the following Tuesday she had another painful headache that made her cry, but it didn't last as long as the first and wasn't as painful.  On Wednesday her headache came back and with more intensity and caused her to throw up and sha was unable to even drive.  We headed to Luverne, MN to her doctor and they said it was most likely stress or possible migraines.  They offered to do a CT scan, but Heather decided to wait to see if the prescribed medication would help.  About a week and a half later she was in her apartment with her me, Izzo, and out of nowhere Heather went into a seizure.  I realized what happened before she fell completely and I caught her and rested her on the ground.  I held her to avoid injury her head and once she stopped shaking I immediately called 911.  The paramedics arrived, but Heather was alert at this point so she refused a ride in the ambulance, but agreed to be taken to the hospital by me.  I took her to Regions Hospital in Saint Paul, MN and she was admitted to the ER.  We arrived at the  hospital around 10 PM. They conducted a CT scan of Heather's brain that resulted in them finding an abnormality.  They decided to do an MRI next.  The results came back to show a mass about 6 cm in diameter with a great deal of swelling on the front left side of her brain.  This explained the seizure and the headaches.  They decided to admit her to the neurology department.  Before we were given a new room Heather went into another seizure.  I was the only one in the room an immediately hit the nurse call button.  A nurse did not come immediately so I began to yell.  It took about 10 seconds for a nurse to come to my aid and she ran to get the doctor.  I was holding her until they got into the room.  I removed myself from the room, but watched from the doorway.  This seizure was worse than the first.  I turned away because it was too hard too watch, but then a doctor asked for how long the seizure had lasted.  I reentered the room and told them into was longer then the first and it was easier to see that it was the left side of her brain was affected as her speech was impaired and it was the right side of her body that was mainly impaired.  It took her about 15 minutes to regain her speech control and for her to regain movement of her right side. They gave her medication to calm her, to keep the seizures at bay, and to reduce the swelling around the mass.  This second seizure was at about 5 AM January 13, 2011.  I remained with her in the ER room until they finally admitted her to the hospital.

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