[Former Batavia alderman Kevin Botterman suffered an 'acute hypertension crisis' in which his blood pressure spiked to 289/174. With normal blood pressure being 120/80, the extreme nature of his blood pressure brought on symptoms of a stroke.]
'My blood pressure had spiked to 289/174'
Strokes occur from clots – as in Loughney’s case – but they also occur from high blood pressure – hypertension – as in the case of former Batavia alderman Kevin Botterman.
Botterman, 56, had what is called an “acute hypertension crisis" about 11 a.m. April 14.
“It was headache pain beyond belief that came within minutes and later included vomiting – which is very unusual for me, even when I’m flu-ish,” Botterman said. “I thought I would take a nap and feel better. Lucky thing I did not or the outcome would have been much different.”
Botterman’s wife said to call 911. When Batavia paramedics arrived and realized he was displaying symptoms of a stroke, they called the Mobile Stroke Unit.
“I had weakness, trouble speaking, trouble sitting up,” Botterman said. “I was so weak, I had difficulty staying in a sitting position.”
Because the Mobile Stroke Unit needs to be in an area where it is stabilized in order to use the CT scan, Batavia paramedics met the unit in the parking lot by the Fox Valley Ice Arena on Kirk Road in Geneva, Botterman said.
“My blood pressure had spiked to 289/174,” Botterman said. “I was not on a blood pressure medicine and I had just had an annual physical in January and I was in pretty good shape for my age.”
Normal blood pressure is 120/80.
Botterman was in the Mobile Stroke Unit well within the 60-minute “Golden Hour.”
“Thanks to the care I received in that first hour – being treated in the Mobile Stroke Unit within 45 minutes of the onset of symptoms – that made a huge difference,” Botterman said.
Botterman was taken to Central DuPage Hospital where he was in the intensive care unit until Sunday evening the next day, then he was transferred to a standard room and released to go home late Monday evening.
He had some difficulties with short-term memory and fatigue, but both cleared up with time.
His ongoing care is to receive blood pressure medication, take a daily walk, diet and check his blood pressure daily to see that it stays within a normal range.
Botterman is recording a video for BATV about his experience and hopes others will not hesitate if they suspect a stroke.
“The neurologist said had I not received that care within the first hour or so, the outcome would have been significantly different and might have been fatal if I had taken that nap or ignored the symptoms,” Botterman said. “I consider myself fortunate that my wife was here and convinced me to call the paramedics.”
How to identify a stroke:
Think FAST if you or someone else has these symptoms:
• Face: Ask the person to smile to see if one side of the face is drooping.
• Arms: Ask the person to raise both arms to see if one drifts downward.
• Speech: Ask the person to repeat a simple phrase to see if their speech is slurred or strange.
• Time: If you observe any of these signs, call 911 immediately:
More online resources:
• American Stroke Association -www.strokeassociation.org
• Centers for Disease Control and Prevention - www.cdc.gov/stroke/facts.htm
• U.S. Department of Health and Human Services - mindyourrisks.nih.gov
• National Institutes of Health – www.stroke.nih.gov