Minutes matter, especially when it’s mom’s life that hangs in the balance.
“It was just so quick that the team found out what was going on and how to help her. They essentially saved my mom’s life,” Andy Justice, a security guard in our emergency department at Mercy Health – Springfield Regional Medical Center, shares.
Andy was on duty when his sister called with the news that their mother was in an ambulance and heading to the hospital.
“I woke up out of a dead sleep, and when I went to get up out of the bed, my left leg – from my toes all the way up to my groin – was numb,” Norma Jean Justice, Andy’s mother, recalls. “I told my husband to get up, there’s something wrong. The ambulance was here in about three minutes, and when they took my blood pressure it was 220 over 120. That scared me.”
The concern was that Norma Jean could be having a stroke. Luckily, first responders got her to the hospital fast and there, our team was waiting to jump into action. It was a series of events that Andy got to witness firsthand.
“I walked outside to meet my mom – her eyes were swollen, and she wasn’t making one bit of sense – but they didn’t waste any time,” Andy shares. “I was going in circles trying to keep up with everything – she had maybe three scans in 25 minutes tops – but there was no chaos. Everything ran smooth, and before I knew it, they were done and just waiting on a room for her to go up and get her 23-hour observation window going.”
Our doctors found the source of Norma Jean’s problem to be a small clot in her brain, where some of her blood vessels were narrowing.
“I’m thankful I went in,” Norma Jean shares. “They put me on a new medication to break things down where I had that problem. It was frightening, but everybody at the hospital was great – very caring and compassionate.”
By the next day, Norma Jean was released from the hospital and headed back home to rest.
“She called me, all bubbly,” Andy recalls. “From the way she sounded, just the difference from the time she pulled up into the ambulance to the next day when she was laughing and joking around, it was sweet music to my ears. It was just all so amazing. They took really good care of my mom.”
And now, Norma Jean is now receiving follow-up care with some of our Springfield providers to manage her risk of future strokes.