World Stroke Day was established on October 29th 2004 and is globally observed to underscore high rates of stroke by raising awareness. The prevention and treatment of the condition is to ensure better care and support for survivors.
Karen Crossan is a victim of a stroke. Karen’s stroke occurred on 15th March 1999 at work in the Europa Hotel when she was only 29 years of age. She stated “All of a sudden I was at work and I started to feel unwell and within five to ten minutes I collapsed to the floor where I couldn’t stand”. Furthermore, Karen discussed being rushed to the Royal Victoria Hospital where she was monitored for two weeks and diagnosed with a spinal stroke. “I spent two months recuperating, I had to learn how to walk, I was in a wheelchair as I had no use from my waist down. I was paralysed”.
Moreover, when discussing support from family Karen was thankful for the care she received. “ I got loads of support within my recovery as they had constant visits by being by my side”. Karen is also thankful for her partner Eamon as he made it his mission to do anything possible to assist in any way.
Regarding her life now nearly twenty-four years later Karen says the stroke has impacted her as she is now registered as disabled. She said ‘ I have a disability now in my right side and can no longer walk normally and as the years go on I’ve lost power”.
Karen credits awareness of World Stroke Day with its famous motto “Minutes Can Save Lives’ ‘ as a lifesaver as it gets the message across and by forwarding the message into schools and Universities it can help stroke victims get their story heard.