Zach and Shanna started their weekend like they do so many this time of year....watching Braeden's hockey game. Friday, January 29th was spent at the Schaumburg Rink in Bismarck until about 11pm and then the rest of the evening memories were being made at the hotel until about 2am. Zach felt fine when he went to bed, but when he woke up the next morning, he had such extreme dizziness he required Shanna's assistance to walk across the room. With the next hockey game scheduled to start in a few hours Shanna knew he needed to go in and they hoped to be out of the ER before game time. A previous ear infection with a bout of bronchitis would make sense for him to have some vertigo and both Zach and Shanna figured it would be nothing more.....and then the Unexpected Journey began.
Zach and Shanna arrived at the Sanford ER in Bismarck on Saturday morning and the doctor felt it was just vertigo and gave Zach some meds to help with the dizziness and the nausea that accompanied the severe dizziness. The meds did not help and the doctor noticed how sleepy Zach was and things didn't set right with him. A CT Scan of his head was ordered and it was found to be negative. Nothing in the CT scan showed any areas of concern. Still not feeling comfortable with a vertigo diagnosis, the doctor ordered an MRI. Hours passed between arriving at the ER and finally having an answer for Zach's dizziness and sleepiness. The MRI proved he had a stroke in his cerebellum. Throughout the day he didn't have any of the "classic" stroke signs. No facial drooping or speech problems, equal bilateral strength in arms and legs, vision and reading tests were all great, sensation in tact. Due to the location of the stroke the dizziness and lack of balance made sense. Zach also had a headache that was very persistent but not odd since he had had a stroke. He was admitted into the hospital about 9:30pm and meds were given to help with his dizziness, nausea and headache. He was put through various vision, sensation, speech and movement tests throughout the night and he passed them all. The main complaint was his dizziness and nausea did not improve and his head was hurting more and more.
Shanna is very appreciative of all the support she has received. It is at times like this Shanna and Zach get to experience how many people's lives they have touched and the importance of their friendship. I encourage everyone to write in the guestbook as I know Zach will love hearing everyone's well wishes as soon as he is able.