Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

Call to Understand Brain Injury

Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

Call to Understand Brain Injury

Article excerpt

Byline: KALI LINDSAY Reporter

MISTAKEN for being drunk and sleeping for days - this is the devastating effect suffering a stroke has had on one woman's life.

Charmaine Thurtle, of Washington, woke up two years ago and was unable to use her hand. Just hours later she was taken to hospital where doctors told her she had suffered a stroke.

Since then, Charmaine, who was 45 at the time, has been on a long road to recovery and suffers from weakness to her right side and severe fatigue, which affects her mobility.

The 47-year-old said: "I woke up in the middle of the night not able to get up off the floor. I managed to get back on the sofa and must have gone back to sleep. I was living with my friend at the time and staying on their sofa.

"She came down in the morning and made me a cup of tea, but I couldn't pick it up.

"She gave me a bottle and I could not hold it, but I didn't think much of it."

Charmaine's friend went out to get some shopping. But when she returned a few hours later, her pal's health had taken a drastic turn for the worst. "This time I could not speak," she said.

Charmaine went to Sunderland Royal Hospital where tests revealed she'd suffered a stroke.

It has been a long road to recovery, with Charmaine working with other specialists in a bid to improve her movement and after working with a speech therapist she was able to talk again. Charmaine has been left with long-term health issues that include problems with her memory and concentration. But, she says one of the main problems she has is suffering with fatigue. She said: "There are days when I won't leave the house and the fatigue leaves me in a right pickle."

It is a contrast to the life she used to lead, Charmaine said.

"I was always running around.

I worked as a barmaid and had quite an active life," she said. …

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