Bayhealth Stroke Patient Dave Bruner

A Timely Lesson to Not Delay Care

Neurosciences

Dave Bruner knew something was wrong as he was getting ready for bed one night. Self-described as ‘54 years young,’ Bruner retired from the Air Force after more than 20 years. He’s now the operations manager for a well-known local moving company. One night in early February Bruner could feel his face tingle. The feeling moved down his right arm, through his core, and to his right leg.

“I was scared, but I shrugged it off,” admits Bruner. The impact of COVID coupled with the red-hot housing market (and therefore red-hot moving market) meant work was stressful. “I chalked it up to the work stress. At the time I thought I would just get some sleep and that would help. I can tell you, the sleep didn’t help, and my medical team definitely gave me a scolding about that choice.”

When Bruner woke up still numb across half his body, he had his wife bring him to the Emergency and Trauma Center, Kent Campus. He was immediately evaluated for symptoms of stroke. Diagnostic testing confirmed that Bruner had a stroke and had bleeding on his brain. He was admitted to the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) for several days for evaluation.

“I did not want to be in the hospital, but I have to say everyone on my care team went above and beyond to make sure I was comfortable and to make sure I was informed every step of the way,” said Bruner. “I work in customer service; I knew this was genuine.”

In all, Bruner was admitted to the ICU at Bayhealth Hospital, Kent Campus for three days. In that time, Bruner says every Bayhealth team member he encountered was caring beyond measure. While in the hospital, he was seen by Nurse Practitioner Megan Hoplock, NP-C. After discharge, Bruner was referred to Bayhealth Neurology to continue seeing Hoplock for follow-up care.

“Mr. Bruner suffered a hemorrhagic stroke. These types of strokes are less common and occur when a ruptured blood vessel causes bleeding inside the brain,” said Hoplock. “When I saw Mr. Bruner in the hospital I was able to provide education about the steps he needs to take at home to stay healthy. So far he’s doing a great job following those instructions.”

Bruner admits he’s a lucky man and has learned many lessons following this experience.

“Bottom line: don’t delay care. You need to go to the emergency room the second you suspect something is wrong. I know that’s what I should’ve done the moment I suspected I had a stroke. While my recovery is still underway, I know how fortunate I am,” said Bruner. “Just know you’ll be in good hands getting your care at Bayhealth. You’ll walk out knowing every person you met wanted to make sure you got better.”

Visit Bayhealth.org/Neurosciences to learn about Bayhealth’s growing outpatient neurology offerings.