Denise RobertsDenise Roberts was leading a very healthy lifestyle with a lot going on, eating well and exercising daily. In August 2020, she began to experience small headaches. She didn’t think much of it because she was fairly young (only 38) and healthy. But, to her and her family’s surprise, she later suffered from an aneurysm, which triggered a stroke. Her husband, Marc, rushed her to MemorialCare Long Beach Medical Center, where she received treatment and care in the Comprehensive Stroke Center.

During her stay in Long Beach Medical Center, Denise was under the care of Reza Jahan, MD, Division of Interventional Neuroradiology, MemorialCare Long Beach Medical Center. Denise had an Anterior Communicating Artery aneurysm, which needed to be coiled through an endovascular procedure. In this minimally invasive procedure, a catheter is inserted through the groin and threaded up into the brain in order to coil the artery. Initially, the surgery was a success, but complications soon arose, and Denise needed to undergo another procedure. This time Denise needed to have a ventriculostomy, another minimally invasive procedure that involves a catheter connecting to the brain in order to drain spinal fluid. She was on a ventilator for a while, but recovered quickly and did an outpatient procedure six months after to replace the coils around her artery.

“Dr. Jahan was great and helped us feel super comfortable at the hospital,” says Marc, Denise’s husband. “He kept us updated all the time and explained all the procedures to us, and what to expect coming into everything. He made sure that we understood everything that was going on and helped Denise recover that much faster.”

Denise’s fast-paced lifestyle was put on pause, which was an extremely emotional change for her. During this time, Denise and Marc’ daughter was 8 years old, and not being able to see her during her stay in the hospital was very hard on Denise. Although it was tough, Denise fought hard for her daughter and tried her best to speed up her recovery process.

While she was able to return to her daughter quickly, Denise realized that she was no longer able to keep up as well as she used to. The stroke had left her mentally and physically worn out. Denise would become easily overwhelmed mentally and would need numerous breaks when playing with her daughter.

“These kinds of aneurysms are tough to survive,” says Angela West, Program Director, Stroke Program, MemorialCare Long Beach Medical Center. “Despite the odds, Denise has done really well in her recovery in our rehabilitation department, since she was young and physically fit. Now, she’s back to living a relatively normal life and the Stroke Center team is extremely proud of her.”

Since the stroke and having been treated at the Comprehensive Stroke Center, Denise has recovered is able to work out again and keep up with her daughter – for the most part. While she still needs a break every now and then, she no longer needs to take as many. Denise also doesn’t get mentally overwhelmed as easily as before. Thanks to the advice from the care team at the Comprehensive Stroke Center, Denise is able to get back to her active lifestyle.

The Comprehensive Stroke Center at MemorialCare Long Beach Medical Center offers highly trained medical experts and leading-edge technologies that are setting a new standard of care for stroke patients and is committed to improving stroke care for the community.