Family raises awareness after 15-year-old suffers stroke - FOX5 Vegas - KVVU

Family raises awareness after 15-year-old suffers stroke

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A local family wants to bring awareness to an issue very close to their hearts. When it comes to strokes, many people picture older people. However, FOX5 met a teen who had a stroke at just 15-years-old.

Justin Dicus had just gotten home from a hard football practice when he started feeling weird.

However, in just minutes, his whole world changed.

“I looked in the mirror and everything was like wavy like a kaleidoscope and then the next thing I knew I was on the ground,” Justin said.

His parents rushed up the stairs and immediately knew something was wrong.

“I was trying to help him sit up and I noticed that he was completely paralyzed on his left side, he wasn't moving his left side and his face was drooping,” Justin’s Mother Cheryl Dicus said, “I would have never thought that as a 15 year old kid that he would have had a clot in his brain. That he was having an ischemic stroke.”

Doctors determined Justin had high levels of Lipo Protein A, which is a genetic cholesterol associated with heart attacks.

“It gets overlooked a lot and it's not very commonly looked into,” Justin said.

He was immediately put in a medically induced coma.

“We were just begging for him to live the first few nights. They didn't think he was going to make it,” Cheryl said.

“I woke up five days later fully paralyzed, couldn't move anything,” Justin said.

When Justin woke up, doctors told the family he would probably never walk again. When he immediately showed some movement, doctors said it would be a 6-8 month inpatient recovery.

“They obviously didn't know Justin,” Cheryl laughed.

Justin went to work and amazed everyone by walking out of the hospital three weeks later. Justin still has to train and has weakness in his left side.

“He's fought every bit of the way to get to where he's at now and he's still sticking with it and determined to get better,” Justin’s dad Jake said.

Justin is now a patient advocate for Lipo Protein A Foundation. For more information on Lipo Protein A click here.

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