Angela - a patient with a brainstem stroke
Chris - a patient with a major head injury
Angela - a patient with a brainstem stroke
My name is Angela Adamik. I live in the Interlake area. On May 15, 2009 there was a snowfall with rain that had fallen the previous night. I went to work that Friday morning and hit a snow rut from the truck in front of me. My car started to spin three times until coming to a stop in the bottom of the ditch. I made it to work and completed my day only to realize my neck and shoulders continued to hurt. I assumed it was just whiplash. I started to feel really sick. That evening I drove myself to the hospital in Winnipeg, Winnipeg Health Sciences Centre, only to have the whiplash confirmed.
I continued to have neck problems, and turning my head hurt; then started to get headaches and complained about vision problems. Waving this off as just a simple neck whiplash problem, I was sadly mistaken. On August 11, 2009 I proceeded on my way to work just like I have every other day. It was a Tuesday. I was closing up at around 5:15 p.m. I remember feeling “Different”, not quite myself. I thought “Hmmm, this could be low sugar or maybe I was just hungry.” I walked to the Coop grocery store and bought a snack and brought it back to my salon where I ate it. About ten minutes went by and I got really dizzy. I went home which was 20 minutes away. The drive home, I did not remember. I remembered nothing, until my husband came home and found me slumped over our bed in our bedroom. He called for me repeating my name. He pulled me towards him as I was facing away, only to notice the right side of my face was paralyzed, my right arm had been lifeless, and stone-frozen, as well as my right leg. He started to focus in on what was happening; a “stroke.” My husband rushed us to the hospital in Gimli which was 20 minutes from where we live. Once we got there I was non-responsive and started to have seizures. I was then taken from Gimli Hospital to Health Sciences Centre, still having seizures repeatedly, and my muscles started to spasm.
I received an MRI, CT scan, and an EEG. It was confirmed I had suffered a stroke. I had a gash in my second layer of my chorarded (carotid) artery that formed a blood clot which was caused by whiplash from my car accident just three months prior. I went back and forth for treatments and nothing was getting my better: no physio, just medicine and more medication and time is what we had on our side. I was told by my family (inlaws) I should see this fellow “Doctor Dan Roch” (my second “God”), given lots of information on what we should or should not do. We made the appointment May 8, 2010.
After giving up, thinking I will be like this for the rest of my life, I walked into his office with the strong support of my husband at my side. Doctor Roch had asked me a few easy questions; what happened, what do you need, what can I do to help you. I remembered saying “I JUST WANT MY LIFE BACK BEFOR THIS HAPPENED TO US. I WANT TO BE HAPPY, I WANT TO BE NORMAL. I WANT QUALITY.” I just didn’t understand; I was so confused, like I was in a bad dream. I didn’t even recognize who I was.
Doctor Dan took me off the medication and started to do his test on me. He focussed on my eyes, neck, spin, focussing on the neurological parts. He informed us that he had been finishing his study on neurology and would have to wait until his passing the course that he had been trained to do. With his diploma on the wall, and the pride of knowing I was in capable hands, he had treated me as a stroke patient. After proceeding with the neurological tests that he had to perform on me, I had failed the tests, and he had to pull my driver’s licence just as a safety concern.
After several months of repeated tests every Monday, Wednesday and Saturday for eight months, with rehabilitation and oxygen therapy, I started to see hope. My functions of speech, eye co-ordination, brain function, ability to walk better, and to understand everyday tasks improved. My life was getting better. I was now free, with just a few seizure spasms once in a blue moon. My life was returned to me. I was asked one day from his office if I would submit a letter as to what I went through (for his website). I said, “Yes, and I would love to share my sad times, struggle times and happy times and recovery time.”
Doctor Dan gave me back my quality of life; his practices were all textbook, practical, physical, neurological. He received information from his professor in Texas where he had attended his practice. My stroke was named a Wallenburg stroke. (Wallenberg’s syndrome is a neurological condition caused by a stroke in the vertebral or posterior inferior cerebellar artery of the brain stem. )
Doctor Dan and his staff at Sunsky Wellness are all above professional, they are personal and caring. It’s all about you and “wellness.” I adore Doctor Dan beyond words, as I said many thanks to him and his staff, he humbly says, “I’m just doing my job.” I said, “Yes, but you saved my life. “ Please, in closing, I thought I would never see my life getting back to normal. I know who and I am, and recognize myself for the first time in a long time.
Thank you and blesses to Dr. Dan and his staff, and to Mrs. Roch who sacrificed lots, with your support and your families. I want to thank you in this submission letter. I bet my life would not be returned with the quality if it weren’t for the talent of your husband and his practice. Thank you so much. Angela Adamik.
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Chris - a patient with a traumatic brain injury (TBI)
Dr. Dan has been a life saver in my experience. Because of his knowledge, expertise, accurate care and attention, and kindness, I have recovered almost completely from a fairly major head injury. I can’t imagine what my life would be like without the care and restoration that took place as Dr. Dan monitored and addressed my brain/body issues after my accident, but I credit him for the amazing recovery I have had. The quality of my life today is a reflection of the excellent care I received in the years of recovering from my TBI.
I received a traumatic brain injury while working, on July 1, 2009. After 2 CT scans, doctors determined that there were no abnormal bleeds in my brain, and directed me to rest and get back to work as soon as possible. I attempted to keep to my usual tasks, and woke up three days after the accident to discover that I couldn’t speak properly and I couldn’t use the right side of my body properly. I’d been hit in the left parietal lobe of my brain.
I went to my naturopath, immediately, and she referred me that day to Dr. Dan, who is the first neurological chiropractor in Manitoba. Dr. Dan took me seriously, and without knowing who I am, understood that I was not able to move and speak normally (for me). Dr. Dan determined that I was not able to return to work immedately, dealt with Worker’s Compensation, cared for me several times a week in those crucial early months of recovery, led me through the fearful suspense of “will I recover or won’t I?”, and always held the hope that I would recover fully. Every time I think of those days after the accident, I am in awe and gratitude that I was able to receive such excellent, neurologically important care so immediately. I have no doubts that the speed with which I was cared for helped my recovery in ways that I might never be able to quantify.
Dr. Dan’s insights and understanding of how the brain works and heals, coupled with his understanding of how the body works as a whole, helped me through the difficult and long road of recovery from an injury that occurred in a split second. In the first year of recovery, we dealt with headaches, neck pain, eye problems, stomach issues, and skin conditions that specialists, allergists, and dermatologists could not explain/adequately address. In addition, Dr. Dan realized that along with such physical injury, exhaustion, depression and mental health also need to be monitored and addressed, which he again, did with kindness and accuracy.
The journey through recovery has been unlike I ever imagined it would be. I am deeply grateful for the team of excellent professionals who entered my life after the trauma occurred. I cannot tell my story without acknowledging that the woman who performed c-spine stabilization immediately after the accident, the paramedics who got me to the hospitals, the doctor who ordered the ct scans, the receptionists at all those places I had to go, and my family, who watched me those first hours after being released from the hospital, all contributed to my recovery in ways I often find hard to relate to others. However, it was Dr. Dan who provided the expertise, constant care and encouragement through the long recovery after the initial trauma.
I often say to people that I wouldn’t be here as I am today, if it weren’t for Dr. Dan. He understands that recovery from TBI is not a quick process, that it takes time to repair and restore pathways in the brain, and that it is crucial to give the body TIME to heal. Dr. Dan always worked with other professionals in my recovery, always took time to listen to me, and never stopped believing that I could recover from my injury. Chris Voth
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