You may or may not know that Mark Silver suffered a stroke last week.
The following is an email that his wife sent out to family and a few friends late Friday night.
I just want to send a little update about Mark. I come home and find out how many phone calls I have missed and I feel bad. I wish I could talk to you all but it’s physically impossible for me right now.
Thus the mass email! It’s wonderful to know you all care so much, as this is an extremely difficult and stressful time for us.
Today Mark was transferred to Toronto Western Hospital. It’s downtown at Bathurst and Dundas streets and it is one of the BEST hospitals here for neurosurgery.
He is on the second floor (take south elevators) in ICU (or Critical Care) in pod 107. Only two visitors at a time can go and be with him. This is a much bigger ICU than at North York General Hospital.
Today’s CT scan showed that there is some swelling in his cerebellum, where the last stroke occurred. He had to be moved because NYGH doesn’t perform neurosurgery.
It is possible that he may need it – they are talking craniotomy – if the swelling doesn’t subside. So he is in the best hands now for his present condition.
I’m happy to say that he has remained stable and his vital signs are all really excellent. He is fighting. So much so that his right hand has to be restrained because
he wants to pull all of his tubes out. (He has weakness on his left side.) He is responding really well to us. He knows we are there, and shakes his head in response,
and squeezes our hands. The other night when I visited him alone (very late at night) I said “I love you” and he responded by saying the same thing.
Last night he pursed his lips for a kiss! He has done that several times today also. Tonight at the new hospital, the nurse asked him what his last name and he answered loudly “Silver!”
He also spoke my name. You may take these little things for granted but considering Mark’s present condition these are HUGE milestones!
Just 4 days ago he was asleep for an entire day because the doctors didn’t know that he had had a new stroke, this time in his sleep/awake centre (in the cerebellum).
The docs immediately sent him for scans and found the new stroke evidence, and also the cause – there is a blood clot sitting in his vertebral artery in his neck.
That’s when he was moved to ICU. He is on heperin (blood thinner) to shrink the clot and prevent more damage. It’s working. He woke up! And is trying to talk and communicate!
I know there is a long, long road ahead of us and I have to believe that he will recover. He wants to recover! He gets so frustrated lying in that bed, it’s heartbreaking. I need to hear
more stroke stories that have a happy outcome. If you’ve got them, please share them!
So – if anyone is planning on visiting, just let me know ahead of time. I would like to be there when you come. I can’t possibly stay there the whole day. The nurses won’t let me!
I have to come home and recharge so I can look after Mark the following day. He understands that too.
Please come in with a smile on your face, no tears. The last thing Mark wants is to upset anybody. You will see him hooked up to IV’s, constant telemetry and blood pressure cuff,
oxygen tubes and feeding tubes in his nose, and a catheter. I don’t want you to be scared when you see him….he needs all of this!
I’ll be there with the girls tomorrow for most of the day, most likely from 1:00pm on. So will Mark’s mom and his sisters. We just take turns going in to see him. There is a very nice and very huge
lounge area for the ICU families, and lots of places to eat in this hospital. No Starbucks, but there is a Second Cup and a Timmy’s. Mark’s room overlooks the Kimbo Vietnamese restaurant on
Bathurst St. 😉
So very tired, worn out, and trying very hard not to be freaked out,
I saw Mark last Tuesday and he couldn’t wake up. I saw him again yesterday and he looked somewhat better. He was awake and you could tell he was aware of the people in the room but he is very much out of it. He just looks like he’s really sick and trying to fight off whatever has him in it’s control. You can’t talk with him. You can’t have a conversation with him and have him tell you how he’s feeling. He is becoming responsive but he’s like someone that has a fever and is too sick to talk.
The facility he is in appears to be much better. He’s in his own room with someone on the medical staff facing him the whole time.
I’ve had many people contact me to find out what is going on and offer their help in any way. I have passed this on to his wife Mary. She doesn’t seem to feel that there is anything that anyone can do for them at this particular point in time but she may change her mind as time progresses and maybe we can help as a need comes along. I’m sure it will. She is very thankful for everyone’s good wishes and wants to pass along how much she appreciates all the good energy coming Mark’s way.
When Mary goes home at night, there are countless phone messages and emails etc. I think she is overwhelmed by it all and doesn’t find the hours in the day to return much of it. That is why I’m writing this letter. I will try to pass along whatever news comes my way.
I have picked out of my address book anyone who I think wants to know and who I might have an address for. My contact list is spotty as far as email addresses are concerned. Feel free to pass this on to whoever asks about Mark or if you know someone that should know.
Some people have inquired about visiting Mark. The space is small and there is no room for visitors and in fact, there are supposed to be only two people at any time ever in there.If you think you have to, then you should, but keep it very short. If you aren’t 100% sure, then you definitely shouldn’t. This is intensive care. Totally not set up for visitors.
If you NEED to pass on a message to Mark’s family, then at this point you should probably do it through me. I’m just trying to keep the communications down to a level that they can cope with. I don’t mean to scare anyone off from sending their good wishes, just keep it brief and to the point and don’t expect a reply.