Medical miracle allows woman to celebrate 100th birthday on Than - WDRB 41 Louisville News

Medical miracle allows woman to celebrate 100th birthday on Thanksgiving

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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- An elderly woman was rushed to the hospital this week. But a  medical miracle healed her in time celebrate her 100th birthday on Thanksgiving.

Tuesday afternoon, Haley Howard got a frightening phone call with news that her grandmother, 99 year old Dixie Howard, was on the verge of a massive stroke.  "I was shocked, she's the only grandparent I've had and ever grown up with."

Dixie's left side was paralyzed, she tried but couldn't speak, and her family couldn't understand what she was saying. 

But surgeons at Norton Brownsboro rushed to clear the blockage. Doctor Shervin Dashti from the Norton Neuroscience Institute says her brain was being deprived of oxygen "At that age, with having massive stroke on one side of your brain, that's not something that's really survivable."

Her granddaughter Haley says "It was like nothing I've ever seen before. When she was going into surgery, and we said goodbye, I thought it was the last goodbye. And now she's fine. It's crazy, It's a miracle, really." 

But doctors were able to remove the blockage.  Dashti says "literally within seconds regained strength on the left arm, face...speak, vision normalized and went back to normal." Even her personality returned.

Now, Dixie wants out of the hospital.  Haley says "she's cracking jokes and threatening to make sure she can go home for Thanksgiving otherwise she's going to be very unhappy." And this Thanksgiving is particularly special, since Dixie and her only granddaughter share a birthday.  Dixie turns 100 and Haley is 23. 

Dixie is on the mend, and she is truly thankful. "Well, I just accept it. I just accept that my life is perfect. And I couldn't ask for anything more."  And she promises to have a very big cake. 

She credits her longevity to two things. First, she says she's always staying active. "I was forever exercising, first it was roller skates, then it was a sidewalk bike, then it was skiing, then we got into Tennessee walking horses."  Second, Dixie says she has a cocktail at night. But she admits that everybody is different. 

Dixie's 100th birthday couldn't have fallen on a better day.  She jokingly tells her family that "I love you more today than I did yesterday, because yesterday you pissed me off!" 

And granddaughter Haley is thankful to celebrate another birthday with her beloved grandmother, "It's really a miracle. It's a Godsend."

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