Man, 26, was given an hour to live after suffering stroke in shower


A man faced dying or potentially being paralysed for the rest of his life after suffering a stroke.

Jesse Johnson, 26, was rushed to hospital after collapsing in his bedroom on March 6 last year.

His sister Tiahana, 20, had called the ambulance after he shouted out to her at their home in Adelaide, Australia.

By the time he arrived at hospital, Mr Johnson’s neurological Glasgow Coma Scale (GCS), was revised to three, the lowest possible score which could lead to death.

He was prepped for surgery although it wasn’t certain whether he would survive, but without it he wouldn’t survive the hour.

Mr Johnson was discovered to have had a stroke caused by an arteriovenous malformation (AVM).

A decompression surgery was performed to stop his brain from bleeding and swelling, but they were unable to remove the AVM due to the excess of blood.

Mr Johnson was placed on life support and doctors warned his partner, David, 24, and his sister they thought he might have locked in syndrome, meaning he was conscious and aware, but he could not communicate because his motor function was badly damaged.

This turned out not to be the case and after 11 days he showed signs of response through hand squeezing and blinking.

Mr Johnson was eventually moved from ICU and into another ward but the stroke caused him to develop cerebellar ataxia, affecting his balance, coordination, swallowing and eye movement.

He was also only able to communicate via a board after having a tracheotomy tube fitted.

Mr Johnson has since learned how to talk and eat again after being transferred to a rehabilitation centre.

He is currently using a four-wheeled walker but is making good progress, which can be seen on his Instagram page.

Mr Johnson said: ‘I’m extremely grateful that didn’t happen, because if I had locked in syndrome, I would have rather died.’

He added: ‘I’m in the early stages of recovery, but I have already exceeded the expectations of many doctors, so I’m optimistic that I still have much recovery ahead of me.

‘I’ll always have balance and co-ordination issues, but therapists said that it will be a lifetime recovery and if I work hard, I’ll continue to improve for the rest of my life.

‘The hardest aspect is not being as independent as I once was. I’ve always found it hard to ask people for help and now there are many things that I need help with, so the sudden change has been very hard to get used to. I don’t want to feel like a burden to anyone.

Mr Johnson had the AVM removed last December in order to prevent him from having another stroke.

stella Posted on August 08, 2019 15:33

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