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Hear Greg's story in his own words

Carterville's Greg Talley Now Walks a Little Bit Farther

In July of 2019, Carterville resident, Greg Talley, quickly realized his life was in danger. He finished a construction project at his home and noticed his foot dragging as he walked back to his house. He also began feeling nauseous and dizzy.

Greg told his wife of 38 years, “Something is not right; we need to go to the hospital.” 

Greg arrived at SIH Memorial Hospital of Carbondale with the classic stroke symptoms of left side weakness that affected both his arm and leg. The B.E.F.A.S.T acronym helps identify typical stroke symptoms affecting Balance, Eyes, Face, Arm, and Speech. The ‘T’ is a reminder to call 911 immediately if you experience any of these symptoms.

A CT scan at SIH Memorial Hospital of Carbondale, confirmed that Greg had suffered a stroke.  SIH Brain & Spine Institute Neurologist, Dr. Alejandro Hornik, confirmed that the stroke was a 1 out of a possible 42 on the stroke scale – a tool utilized by clinical staff to assign a number value between 0 and 4 to each stroke symptom. 0 representing normal function and 4 representing complete impairment.

The following morning Greg woke up with no feeling in the left side of his body. Stroke treatments were limited in Greg’s case due to the type and size of stroke he had. His care plan ultimately lead him to Inpatient Rehabilitation at SIH Herrin Hospital. Rehabilitation - specifically, stroke rehabilitation - focuses on assisting patients regain lost abilities. 

When Greg arrived at Inpatient Rehabilitation, he was not able to walk. He began physical and occupational therapy on his first full day in the unit- as it is imperative to begin rehabilitation as soon as possible after a stroke for optimal recovery. 

The combination of occupational and physical therapy assisted Greg with his quick recovery. Rehabilitation helps stroke survivors relearn the skills that are lost when part of their brain is damaged. 

After two weeks of therapy, Greg was released from Inpatient Rehabilitation.    

The most important thing for Greg going forward is focusing on secondary prevention, which means lifestyle changes so that he does not suffer a bigger stroke in the future. Greg needed lifestyle changes include measures to maintain a healthy blood pressure and cholesterol. With proper lifestyle management, 80% of strokes are preventable.

“Laugh a little bit more. Eat, drink a little bit less. Walk a little bit farther,” Greg proclaimed.