Strokes Among Women Increasing: A Tulsa Woman Shares Her Story
TULSA, Oklahoma - Doctors say for the first-time American women are about to pass men for the most reported strokes.
Just this month a nurse from Tulsa's Clarehouse suffered a stroke and what's surprising is her age.
Heather Akers is just 46-years-old, and doctors tell me they're seeing more patients around Heather's age suffering from strokes
"So scary didn't know what was going on. Didn't think it was possible for me to have a stroke at 46,” said Akers. Akers works as a nurse at Clarehouse and was at work when she started to get blurred vision.
"When I came into the emergency room they had like a stroke team that comes and I didn't believe I thought it was kinda silly."
Heather couldn't believe she suffered from a stroke impacting her left side. Immediately, she thought of how she was going to take care of her husband and two kids.
”Wondering what I was going to do with my future, sorry, because Dr. Fredieu is amazing for me he, he's given me a lot of hope."
Dr. Fredieu says he's happy with Heather's progress considering her stroke happened less than 3 weeks ago.
"She happened to have her stoke in a very important area of the brain where the fibers that are involved in strength and sensation all lie very close together,” said Fredieu. “We're seeing more women and men who don't really have a lot of risk factors other than having a genetic predisposition because of high blood pressure or diabetes."
Sadly, that isn't the case for Heather. Her sister died from a heart attack at 31 and her dad suffered from heart trouble. Dr. Fredieu explains for those like Heather it's even more important to be healthy.
"The things you can change are high blood pressure, diabetes, high cholesterol, smoking."
Heather was joking around asking if she could go back to work now as a hospice nurse she says she knows people need her help.
She should be able to head back to Clarehouse in a few months.