14-Year-Old Stroke Patient Bringing Light to Youth Cases

When you’re 14 years-old you’re thinking about getting stellar grades and making the sports team, not worried about having a stroke. On January 10th Zosia Wasylewski, a freshman at Boyne Falls Public School face this medical nightmare, she had a stroke in her third-hour math class. “All of a sudden I recognized I couldn’t feel my left arm and then it was the whole left side,” explains Zosia.

Staff and faculty at Boyne Falls Public School took her symptoms seriously and called for immediate medical attention. “You don’t want to hear that your 14-year-old daughter is having a stroke. It’s the last thing on your mind,” says Zosia’s father, Frank Wasylewski.

Zosia knew little about strokes, thinking it would never happen to her. “I always just thought it was something that happened to like older people that had some kind of issue already.” Although rare for people her age, it’s something that can happen to anyone at any age. So knowing the warning signs and symptoms are crucial to helping someone.

Zosia has a blood clot in her brain that doctors believe came from her leg, through a hole in the heart and went up to her brain. Frank says the blood clot was relatively large. “Three centimeters like an inch and a quarter.”

This family is hoping their story serves as a message to listen to your body and know the symptoms/warning signs of a stroke.

Madison Gardner had the chance to do a Skype interview with Dr. Justin Singer, the neurosurgeon at Spectrum Health Down in Grand Rapids that helped Zosia. Here he shared the “F.A.S.T” acronym. “F” standing for facial droop, “A” meaning can’t move arms, “S” for speech and “T” for time. All important things to remember when looking to help someone who may be suffering a stroke.

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