Stroke in young children is more common than most people realize. The effects can be challenging and life long.
Ayanna Bradford is a cute 5-year-old with a bubbly personality. She likes to draw and sing. Her parents brought her to the hospital on June 2nd... after what started as a tummy ache suddenly got a lot worse. They didn't know what was wrong with Yaya, as they call her, until doctors gave her an MRI. "That's when they pulled us aside and said, 'It's not good. You're going to ICU right now. She had a stroke.' And I can't tell you how hard it was to see the picture and see that side of her brain, how swollen it was and how different it looked from a normal brain," said Many Bradford. She suffered other complications, with her heart, gall bladder and pancreas. "She's a fighter. She's a tough cookie," said Mandy.
Now, doctors are working on the affects of the stroke. She has a tough time talking and using her left arm and leg. "Stroke in kids is a lot more common than people think," said Dr. Fernando Acosta, Jr. So common, Cook Children's now has a stroke clinic to give kids like Yaya the special attention they need. "This does happen to kids. It could be your kid. You never know, It's nothing you ever expect," said Mandy. "But you look at her and she smiles all the time and she's happy, and so the personality she has is really going to serve her well to recover from this stroke," said Dr. Acosta, Jr. "Watching her in therapy and how she's progressed, it's amazing," said Mandy.
It could be weeks before Yaya can go back home, and she could have lifelong challenges.
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