Reversing the Effects of a Stroke

At UConn Health, doctors are reducing the risk of permanent disabilities or fatality in patients.

This article is sponsored by UConn Health. It does not reflect the work or opinions of NBC Connecticut’s editorial staff. To learn more about UConn Health, visit

Every year, more than 795,000 people in the United States have a stroke—an average of one stroke every 40 seconds. These blockages of blood flow to the brain can lead to a number of long-term physical disabilities as well as emotional, behavioral and communication issues.

At UConn Health, medical experts are using minimally invasive procedures paired with the latest diagnostic services and treatments to reduce the chances of a stroke leading to permanent or fatal results. Dr. Abner Gershon, a radiologist at UConn Health, says this procedure was essential in saving Nancy’s life; she was transported to UConn Health after suffering a stroke that could have left her permanently impaired.

“If there is an obstruction or a blockage in the major artery to the base of the brain - if that artery is not opened rapidly, it's going to lead to a large area of dead brain tissue,” says Gershon.

Nancy’s daughter, Helen, recalls arriving at her mother’s house and asking the police officer to transport her mother to UConn Health.

“We went through an artery in the leg,” says Dr. Ketan Bulara, Chief of Neurosurgery at UConn Health. “We navigated some catheters all the way up to the level of the basilar artery, and then we pulled out the blood clot.”

Thanks to the experienced team at UConn Health, Nancy has been given a second chance and is able to continue her streak of beating her family at Jeopardy.

“If you’ve just been pulled back from the pearly gates, would you be grateful?” says Nancy. “I was very grateful–more grateful than I could ever say.”

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