Mr. Yusuf Had a Stroke
Allan is employed with Longfellow Hospital and cares for Mr. Yusuf, who was admitted into the hospital three weeks ago after having a stroke at home. Fortunately, his son and daughter-in-law brought him to the hospital quickly. A stroke is also called a cerebrovascular accident, or CVA, and it occurs in someone’s brain when blood flow to part of the brain stops or when there is bleeding in the brain. The result of a stroke is the death of brain cells.
Some stroke victims cannot move one side of the body and have hemiplegia, while other stroke victims are weaker on one side and have hemiparesis. Mr. Yusuf has hemiparesis. He is weaker on his right side and has a difficult time feeling, touching, and swallowing. Furthermore, he has aphasia. Because of Mr. Yusuf’s aphasia, Allan doesn’t always understand what Mr. Yusuf is trying to communicate, and Allan has discovered that Mr. Yusuf has an easier time answering questions if Allan is very direct. He asks “yes/no” questions rather than giving Mr. Yusuf several choices, and he also uses hand gestures and simple directions when he wants Mr. Yusuf to sit, move, walk, or eat.
Mr. Yusuf is slowly learning how to use his left side for actions like eating and writing, and the independence he is gaining raises his confidence. Allan watches carefully when Mr. Yusuf eats to make sure he swallows all of his food and isn’t at risk for choking. When Mr. Yusuf shaves, Allan watches him carefully because Mr. Yusuf can’t feel some parts of his face and could cut himself. To aid him in his hospital room, Allan keeps Mr. Yusuf’s books and glasses on his bedside table so they are easily reachable. Mr. Yusuf is doing the exercises recommended by his physical therapist, and with Allan’s help and help of other staff, he is getting used to life after a stroke.