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Garbled Texting Reveals Woman's Stroke
A text from an 11-weeks-pregnant woman to her husband so alarmed
him, he insisted she go immediately to an emergency room, doctors
The message read: "every where thinging days nighing," her text
read. "Some is where!" The woman's husband knew she kept her
autocorrect off, so something else was up,
At the emergency room, doctors diagnosed the 25-year-old with a
stroke. The story does have a happy ending, however. After a
hospital stay and treatment with blood thinners her symptoms
resolved and her pregnancy continued normally,
The event was reported online Dec. 25 in the
Archives of Neurologyby doctors from Harvard School of
Medicine. The doctors refer to the woman's condition as
"dystextia," a termed coined in an earlier case.
The condition appears to be a new type of aphasia, which is
trouble processing written or spoken information. "As the
accessibility of electronic communication continues to advance, the
growing digital record will likely become an increasingly important
means of identifying neurologic disease, particularly in patient
populations that rely more heavily on written rather than spoken
communication," the doctors wrote.
Although jumbled text messages are common Dr. Larry Goldstein, a
neurologist and director of the stroke center at Duke University,
ABCthat, "It would have been very easy to dismiss because of
the normal problems with texting, but this was a whole conversation
that wasn't making sense. I might be concerned about a patient
based on a text like this if they were telling me they hadn't
intended to send a disjointed jumble but they weren't able to
Goldstein also said aphasic symptoms are often discounted,
however, they can be signs of a serious medical condition.
In this case, the woman had signs earlier in the day including
inability to fill out a form and speaking,
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