A Dundee lawyer today says he feels lucky to be alive after suffering a “massive” stroke following going out on a run.
Simon Allison, 41, was exercising with a friend when he suffered a minor stroke.
Fortunately, he decided to go to hospital — where he suffered a second massive stroke that left him unable to speak or move his limbs.
Just 2% of people who suffer a stroke in the UK suffer the kind that Simon did.
Simon, who is an employment lawyer with Blackadders, has spoken of the experience.
He said: “I was out running with a friend and we were speaking and he told me that I wasn’t making any sense.
“He said, ‘Your face is slipped down’ and convinced me to go to A&E at Ninewells Hospital.
“When I was there, I was feeling fine and my face and voice had recovered but they told me to stay and that I had suffered a small stroke.
“It was a shock, because I am quite fit and healthy.
“I had a CT scan and they told me that I had a tear in an artery in my neck close to my brain.
“They decided to keep me in and I suffered a massive stroke.
“I was given a clot-busting drug straight away.
“I was really lucky to be in hospital, I was in the right place at the right time.
“I couldn’t speak and I couldn’t move my right leg or arm — it was really worrying for me.”
He added: “I was in intensive care for 48 hours and I can’t really remember it.
“I remember waking up and thinking, ‘Where am I?’ but I was so tired that it is all a blur.
“I was too tired to even worry or be scared – all I could do was sleep.
“I was in Ninewells for two weeks and then I was transferred to the Sir George Sharp Unit at Cameron Hospital.”
Simon, from Newport in Fife, stressed the importance of people seeking medical help immediately if they suffer from any symptoms associated with a stroke.
He said: “My message to people is that if they suffer symptoms of a minor stroke then they need to get seen to.
“If it wasn’t for my friend then I probably wouldn’t have gone to the hospital.
“It could have been a totally different story because I usually go out running on my own with the dog.
“I could have been on my own when I suffered the second stroke, but I was lucky because I was in hospital.”
He added: “I managed to be back at work within three months.
“The kind of stroke I had was really rare — it wasn’t because of stress or depression, nor is there a history of strokes in the family.
“Instead, it was caused by a tear in my artery in my neck, close to my brain. I have no idea what caused the tear and I never will, which is frustrating for me, but I am really lucky to be alive.”
Simon is now set to take part in the Dundee Kiltwalk in the final stage of his recovery, alongside his colleagues Andrew Wallace and Jack Boyle.
Team 3 Spartans 3 Tartans will walk 25 miles to raise money for Stroke Association.
To contribute to Simon’s effort, people can visit dundeekiltwalk2017.everydayhero.com/uk/simon-1.