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 Post subject: Juicers & strokes....
Unread postPosted: Tue Mar 08, 2011 3:57 am
  

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The Juicer class description says that they die of heart failure or stroke after a few years. The effects of heart failure are pretty well covered by tv/movies/books/etc....But not a stroke. I've been thinking about putting together this post for a week or two now when I randomly thought about how "something" in rifts can have a stroke but couldn't recall what it was. I initially thought it was something crazy related, but it wasn't until tonight that I had a bit of boredom and went searching to find it was the juicer class description.

Back on october4 I was working on a neat but simple ghost shaped cake with fondant(think modeling clay type frosting) & arms reaching up/out into a 3d sort of thing for a party at work the next day on the 3rd I had helped a friend move & I was already a bit tired when my left arm suddenly went limp & tore off an arm as my attention shifted away from the arm I was working on. I could still move the arm no trouble at that point & was using it to put things back together but any tie my attention shifted even slightly from my hand, the fingers would go limp &drop whatever was in them. about the time I managed to reattach the arm & tear it off again I started stumbling sideways to the left. The feeling was just the leg going limp for a split sdecond until I caught myself and stabilized it.
Initially I thought the problem was just exhaustion & maybe a nap was needed. Instead I went to look up something on my computer and instead of typing ~150+wpm without thought I needed an intense amount of concentration just to move the individual fingers on my left hand to each key needed. It was possible sure, just difficult beyond belief... On a scale of 1-10 I'd say it was about a 15 for th concentration required. Thats when I remembered an episode of house where they went over the warning signs of a stroke &realized what was happening. Dude fix my pants & take me to the hospiital* because I think I'm having a stroke I said to my roommate (I had gone to pee somewhere between fixing the arm & realizing things & the pull on gym shorts I was wearing were down a few inches on the left side because it was just too much work to care when I was expecting to go take a nap and fix the suspected exhaustion problem.

He did the one arm over the shoulder & half supporting a drunk friend type walk to the car with me because my sideways stumbling was pretty bad by then.
Getting into the car was rough & I was kinda muddled mentally, my left arm was still holding onto the roof of his car over the back door as I climbed into the frontpassenger seat**. My smaller roommate was having trouble guiding me into the car & was doing his best, but I didnt understand what he was trying to do. I could feel my arm was bent in an uncomfortable position but couldn't tell why/how because as far as I was concerned, It was helping to support me. "no no you cant.. you gotta let go" he said and I drunkenly s****lurred/yelled out "I meeed emergenthy room!" a little scared for the first time in the whole thing. My thought process up until that point was that I was having a stroke & panic wouldnt help me so to to stay calm.

The ride to the hospital was quick but a little blurred. I remember getting there at the emergency room overhang/entrance & my roommate jumped out flagging people that were running over for some reason "" my friend needs help his arm & leg are all F**'d up & not working right /he sounds drunk & said he said he's having a stroke!"
I vaguely remember people pulling me out of the car, & at some point after I was pulled from the car someone asking me if I'm on any drugs/smoke/etc. At the time I thought it was the paramedic pulling me from the car asking those questions, looking back it was probably a doctor inside on my way to the ICU.

They pumed me full of meds & I woke up at some point later(don't know when) My thought process was clear and seemed like the most logical thing as I thought in a half awake state"well I don't have hepatitus or anything else that would stop it from working", I looked over at the doorway & a nuurse (or someone)was sitting in a chair in the doorway "please I need some V" no reaction from the unknown human" just a little It will fix this. At the time it seemed logical to be asking for a fictional drug from a fictional TV series & i was speaking clearly ( I hadn't realized how my speech was affected at that point) It could have just been one long slur of unintelligible noises though. From what I'm told, they didn't know if I was going to live or die for the first couple days & what would be left if I lived. Long story short, I spent 12 days in the ICU until getting transfered to a telemetry floor for 6 and eventually arehab hospital where I could learn to be a human again & do things like move around/get dressed/etc.

For probably a month or so my speech was incredibly monotone with occasional awkward pauses between sentences & such. One of my friends later compared it to the aliens from galaxyquest.Talking was difficult in a way I'm not sure how to describe. Sort of like Spock & mccoy's "It would be impossible to discuss the subject without a common frame of reference." when mccoy asked him what it was like to be dead & pushed the issue.

While in the ICU I remember people asking me questions, passing out while answering them, waking up and continuing the answer right where I left off. Things like "my computer password abc>*snore*>*wake up*"defg" as an examnple, but I was having short term memory troubles at the time (possibly due in some amount to drugs) sowasn't bothered or frustrated by it. I must have asked about a billion times "what happened to the cake, did someone bring it to work?">"oh you ate it and it was good?.. ok". Most of my time in the ICU was a blur but I remember having that conversation a lot when I look back, each time I genuinely felt like it was the first time asking.Later my GF said it bothered her that the first few times they lied & told me they did bring it to work so it wouldn't upset me, I don't remember that at all however.
while in rehab I chatted with another patient who had a similar issue with being hyperfocused on finding the status of some case at work & not knowing until later that she asked everyone a zillion times & got told it was being handled already each time.

Therapy was tough but progressed well, You would never believe walking around a room with a huge amount of help would leave you drenched in sweat so quickly. I'm told a bleed like mine recovers better than a clot but has a higher "deficit" (loss of function/control)than the clot. At one point I shared a room with a guy who couldn't even speak. The nurses would do the "are you hungry" ""nnnnn "did you want to go to the bathroom" "nnnn" "are you cold" "did you want to go back to bed/go in the wheelchair"dance with the poor guy whenever he called & often managed to eventually reach some common understanding.

Here I am months later & walking with a cane (or without short didstances if I need/want to) & starting to get a little of my hand back (I can close my fingers and hold a very light tennis ball sized nerf ball a bit but can't yet open them yet myself)
I've seen the guy who couldn't talk While doing outpatient therapy & he can talk now with some effort, He's still working on walking though.
Getting back control of muscles is strange& possibly of interest for when cybernetics come into play. Some times like my arm & the elbow I could move them sometimes or if I was in a certain position. Some muscles initiallycame back in the form of activating a nearby muscle and straining so hard to get it that other nearby muscles jump in and basically go from saying "durrrrr *drool*....." to " oh wait! I'M HELPING!". Therapists say it's called compensation.

It's less so now, but for a long time therapists would ask me to move in certain ways and I literally couldn't remember how to even try to move that muscle, Bend the wrist or turn the hand over were the most common ones. But sometimes I could remember how & just not be able to. The wrist I could often remember how if laying in bed with arm at my side.
As I get my hand back I'm finding something amusing. Controlling muscles is almost like the hydraulic spring on your car trunk to keep it from slamming. I can close them slowly by applying a slow steady close impulse (for lack of a better term), but if I try too hard to close them faster my whole hand starts to shake at the wrist as the signal sort of overflows to the wrist.

Some muscles experience/show something called muscle tone, it's different than what you probably always thought of muscle tone as. Think of it like trying to straighten your arm at the elbow while also bend it at the same time, both as hard as you can. It's not quite that extreme, but certain paired muscles are always having to fight against each other for me resulting in that affect. normaly it isn't an issue for people because they can relax the opposing muscle, but I cant yet. Yes there are drugs that cut down on muscle tone but my doctor & some of the therapists (others ask if I'm taking any) have all told me they basically turn you into gumby and snow you so bad that your basically walking around stoned to hell without the high, so none or me :)!
My wrist shakes when I yawn & a few other things, I'm told it's kind of normal and related to why it feels good to bring your arms back & stretch when you yawn. It shakes if I make a sudden movement that shakes it a little. Sometimes my foot does the same

*My cellphone had reached the dozenth time too many drops a few days prior & still needed replacing, the battery in his was dead
**this is in the states, left side driver, right passenger
****no alchohol was involved but I certainly looked./sounded kinda drunk in some ways
I didnt have the headache at all, but this has the common stroke warning signs about half way down or so


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Unread postPosted: Tue Mar 08, 2011 8:47 am
  

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Wow that sucks!b Good luck with deal with it. I guess you'll be a great GM when handling the juicer last call.


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Unread postPosted: Tue Mar 08, 2011 10:40 am
  

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Dude, I am glad you have been able to survive this. So many don't. Keep on keepin on and you will certainly be able to deal with characters needing to relearn their bodies for whatevr reason it may be :)

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Unread postPosted: Tue Mar 08, 2011 11:02 am
  

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Glad you're recovering man! A question I might have is, is it accurate to say that the Juicer has a stroke or instead a cerebral hemorrhage?
I say this because (in theory) the Juicers IRMSS kit would take care of blockages. The amount of strain a Juicer puts on their body would lead to hemorrhages more than blockages, mainly due to the fact that blockages are the result of plaque buildup which occurs over a long period of time where as hemorrhages can occur quite suddenly (thus the Juicers nose bleed).

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Unread postPosted: Tue Mar 08, 2011 2:18 pm
  

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Joined: Sun Feb 13, 2011 11:44 am
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jaymz wrote:
Dude, I am glad you have been able to survive this. So many don't. Keep on keepin on and you will certainly be able to deal with characters needing to relearn their bodies for whatevr reason it may be :)


just going by what the drugs do to a juicer I'd guess they probably have a bleed/hemmorage like me but maybe worse. Plus from what I've been told, there are drugs that melt the clot & basically prevent damage if they catch it quick enough. Just from how doctors have referenced it. I think stroke/hemmoragic stroke/cerebral hemmorage are pretty much interchangeable unless specifics are important. My chart said inter-cranial hemmorage (i think it was)but almost always they said stroke or bleed, even to each other. I shared a room with another guy who did that & basically he was just a little weak on one side but mostly fine

& yea, the vast majority go to sleep assuming exhaustion and never wake up or just keep fighting it till the brain has too much damage to keep going.I'm pretty far into the minority when it comes to bleeds & younger foks (im 32). I assume a juicer would know the stroke warning signs though


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