I was so excited to call my mum who was on holiday in her caravan down in Dorset. I wanted to tell her that I had my interview and I had a place at University to get my degree in Early Years, but she was very quiet. I asked her if she was ok, I could tell it was a struggle for her to talk but she informed me that while she was washing up, she all of a sudden got hit with a severe headache and as she walked backed to the caravan, she was walking like she was drunk. She then went on to be sick and couldn’t get up. The Caravan site was fabulous and called for a doctor to come and see my mum. The doctor arrived an examined my mum to establish a possible cause of her illness and ruled out meningitis as a cause and suggested a migraine. The doctor gave my mum an injection to cure the feeling of sickness and prescribed 15mg of codeine-phosphorous for the pain.
My mum and dad were forced to abandon their holiday and my mum just didn’t leave her bed when she returned home. Four days after her sudden headache which she later described as someone hitting her over the head with a baseball bat, we called for a doctor again as her condition not only did not improve, but she was very distressed and her condition just deteriorated. It was a Sunday and we were all nervous about leaving her home alone. The doctor came to the house and my mum was able to tell him about her headache, vomiting and stiff neck. The doctor agreed she needed some tests and called for an ambulance to take her. The ambulance men came in and were asking her to do some little exercises like using her hands to push against theirs. They were also concerned that she may have had a mini stoke as her eye and mouth was slanted. We were told to pack an overnight bag for her as she may have tests that day or first thing in the morning.
Five hours later, my mum was home. I remember asking her about her tests and she told me that they didn’t perform any tests other than check behind her eyes to which a doctor said one eye was clear but she wasn’t sure about the other eye. She was sent home with a box of 30mg codeine-phosphorous tablets for her so called migraine.
Two days later Tuesday 15th May 2012 my mum blacks out in her bedroom and her head hits her bedside table causing her mouth to bleed and her front tooth was now wobbly. My dad called the hospital and they told him that they could do nothing to help as she was discharged more than 24 hours ago and that he would have to start again with our doctor. While my dad is calling them, I sit with my mum who is now talking very strangely, asking for people who were no longer with us. I put her strange behaviour down to the fact she hadn’t eaten or drunk anything … maybe she is dehydrated??
My dad manages to get through to a doctor at our surgery and explains to him what had happened over the last week. With my dad explaining her sudden severe headache and vomiting, the doctor said “It sounds like your wife may have a bleed on the brain”. The doctor explained it would be better to not waste time by having him come to the house and to get her straight up to the hospital.
My dad took my mum to the hospital while I tied up loose ends with work as fortunately I was finishing early that day. My friend stayed with me while I waited for news. My dad called me at lunch time and calmly told me that my mum had just had a CT Brain Scan which revealed she did have a Bleed on the brain. I didn’t know what to say and I asked my dad what would have caused this to which he told me that my mum had a ruptured brain aneurysm which was slowly bleeding. The plan was to move her to Southampton Nerological hospital where they will coil the bleed and stop it from causing any further damage. He sounded calm and just asked me to leave my sister a message at work but not to panic.
My dad came home to get some things for my mum to take to Southampton and said there is no point in going to Basingstoke hospital as she will be transferred to Southampton soon, but luckily for me, my gut feeling was to go and sit with my mum at the hospital until the ambulance arrived. I have never been very good with hospitals but my friend offered to come with me and sit with my mum. My mum was so pleased to see me, she had this massive red mark across her forehead where the pain was just so intense that she kept rubbing her head and repeatedly told me she had a bleed on the brain and that she knew she wasn’t suffering from a migraine like they all said. She looked so happy that she was now being taken seriously after a week of being in pain and distress. I could have gone in the ambulance with her but my mum insisted I wasn’t going in there with her. She smiled at me and waved as the ambulance doors closed. I smiled and waved back and said I would see her in Southampton.
That memory of waving goodbye to her will stay with me forever as I was about to discover that this brain aneurysm was more serious and devastating beyond my imagination …
In my next blog, I will share more of mine and my mum’s journey and although the outcome was not a good one for my mum, myself and my family, I am determined to highlight the signs and symptoms so that more lives can be saved. I can’t explain to you just how much I miss my mum. All I can say is that a piece of me went with her and I will never get over it. My mum was a caring and bubbly person who would do anything for anyone and that is why I am sharing this with you all. My mum loved to help others and as hard as it is for me to write this, it just may help save a life and my mum would want that more than anything.
A ruptured Brain Aneurysm is a life threatening condition, never ignore a severe headache. Blood is an irritant to the brain and once blood touches the brain, it causes damage and time lost is Brain loss.
We also welcome other Brain Aneurysm Survivors and anyone who has been affected by this condition, to share their stories, so that more people know about the condition, recognise the symptoms and act quickly.
SUDDEN SEVERE HEADACHE? … IF IN DOUBT, GET CHECKED OUT!
#brainaneurysm #bleedonthebrain #migraine #migrainesymptoms #severeheadaches