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I was fit as a fiddle, but now I can’t walk…It must be an attack.




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By Ovundah Nyeche.

Mama was very sound and went to the village for the usual “August meeting”, she was apparently as fit as a fiddle when she left. She was speaking at the village meeting when she slumped and started having seizures.

Mama was not a known epileptic, mama had high blood pressure but was not regular with her drugs in fact she argued with anyone who ever told her she was hypertensive, mama believed she was healed, mama also had diabetes.

Mama was immediately taken to a “Prayer house” as her relatives believed she was attacked by diabolical means. They had to send this strange “Evil sickness” back to sender, they also had to cast it away. While she was in the “Prayer house” they then sent a message to her children in the city who were educated but who believed deep in their heart this was not normal and in fact this “Strange sickness” was projected via voodoo.

After three days in the “Prayer house” it was obvious mama was not making any improvement and so she was sent back to the city and brought to the hospital, after examination by the doctor, it was found out that mama had a stroke.

Aunty had a very terrible headache, throbbing and banging, she had a packet of paracetamol and other analgesics she procured from the chemist close to her house, she had been taking them all to no avail.

Aunty stood up to go and do her chores and as she was ironing she feel down to the ground and called for help, she was helped on her feet but it was noticed she could no longer stand or make use of one side of her body, her relatives simply left her at home.

Hours later she was noticed to be having frequent seizures, the screams from her daughter attracted her neighbours, who poured all manner of things on her, beat her repeatedly so the seizures would stop and put garri turner, spoon and a metal in her mouth, to stop her from clenching her teeth and biting her tongue.

They would inflict so much injury on her mouth, knock off some teeth and dislocate her jaw. Moments later, Aunty slipped into unconscious and boom they remembered that there was something called the hospital, she was brought in unconscious and she was still having seizures; with her relatives hoping she wakes up immediately.

In these two scenarios, the risk factors were obvious.

They were blacks: being black connotes a higher risk of having a stroke ( I hear a God forbid).

They were hypertensives: Hypertension is one of the major reasons people have strokes, it is not something to toy with. These days many young people have high blood pressure. Hey, when last did you check your blood pressure? What is your number? It may shock you.

Mama was diabetic : Diabetes increases the risk of having strokes. Diabetes affect small and large blood vessels, affects nerves and can cause deposition of fats on the blood vessels.

Both were postmenopausal: Before menopause, the hormone mix in ladies protect them to a large extent against stroke, but after that the risk increases.

Sedentary lifestyle: Both Mama and Aunty stay mostly indoors. These days people hardly exercise, and many regular jobs make you seat for a long time without exercise.

Poor drug adherence: In Nigeria almost everyone is a doctor so many times patients determine what they want to take and how they want to take their drugs. I have heard my patients tell me they take their anti hypertensive drugs only when they feel somehow, in fact one opened up to me that he takes his drugs only when he wants to come to the hospital so his blood pressure would be close to normal, so the doctor will not admit him. Also many do not take their anti-diabetic medications. Another group cannot afford their medications, they therefore have to damn the consequences.

Listed above are some of the risk factors for a stroke, which as you can see are highly unspiritual. One cannot help being black or being a woman and a post menopausal one at that, but you can modify your lifestyle by being deliberate in exercising, eating healthy and complying with anti-hypertensive or anti-diabetic medications which on the overall reduce your risks of a stroke. Also young people need to deliberately cut down on the quantity of alcohol they consume and stop smoking either actively or by always staying where people smoke.

I would love to get a feedback from you, or questions if you have any.

Stay safe, stay healthy.


Any similarity with persons in the above story and any other person living, dead or in between is surely a coincidence.

#HearWord #HearWordSeries

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  1. Avatar

    Dionakovie Ikenna Obuh

    September 2, 2017 at 7:56 am

    Good one. Very informative. More grace Ovd.

    • Avatar


      September 8, 2017 at 9:22 am

      Thank you so much Ma

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Healthy Living

World Suicide Prevention Day 2019.





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Every 10th of September the World Health Organization in collaboration with the International Association of Suicide Prevention celebrates the World Suicide Prevention Day.

This year just like last year the theme is ‘Working Together to Prevent Suicide’.

Every year about 800,000 lose their lives by suicide and this amounts to a death by suicide every 40 seconds.

25 more people attempt suicides and many more have suicidal ideations.

Of those aged 15 – 29 years, suicide accounts for the second leading cause death, topped only by Road traffic accidents.

Suicide is a public health concern and any one can be affected, and it is very preventable.

Unfortunately suicide does not end the pain but passes it to family members, friends, colleagues and others.

Last Saturday, RivEthics an initiative of the first lady of Rivers State Justice Mrs Suzzette Eberechi Nyesom-Wike, did a suicide awareness/ prevention campaign on radio and yours truly was the guest.

You can listen or download the broadcast which is in English Language and Pidgin English via the link below.

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Healthy Living

Why do at last, what you should do at first?





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By Ovundah Nyeche

If you know you will eventually go to the hospital, please do go there first.

What shall it profit you to go everywhere and anywhere and then eventually come to a real hospital when options are few and limited.

You have diabetes and you are convinced by friends and others to stop taking your medications and you immediately thrash your medications and you start munching bitter leaves, bitter kola and alcoholic bitters like because according to them, it will cure you of diabetes.

Subsequently, you miss all your appointments as you think diabetes is all about sugar control.

Well yeah, you noticed your sugar control is better, but you are feeling more unwell and you seem not to realize, your kidneys are going on strike.

You are diabetic, you have a boil and you allow ‘the enemy’ to use you to burst it and you keep dressing the wound at home even when it is obvious the wound is going left and becoming worse. To explain it away, you are told you stepped on ‘poison’ (diabolic) and you have to also use diabolic means to treat it.

You know your issues, diabetes, but you are deceived, because someone that speaks Queen’s English and has a visa puts your hand in a phoney machine and gives you highfalutin diagnosis and tells you to discard your regular medications.

I know the end of the story and it is usually not in your favour.

Please take your medications, instructions and appointments seriously and don’t take medical decisions based on hearsay or assumption.

#hearword #OvdSpeaks #hearwordseries

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Healthy Living

Living Test Tubes…





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By Ovundah Nyeche.

And so one day I was seated with a patient, who came for a particular complaint…

And boom the  discussion turned to fibroids…

And boom I hear…

I am taking a herbal remedy for my fibroids…

And here was I sweating…

Madam, do you know what the herbal remedy you are taking contains? Nooooooooooo!

Madam, can you explain to me what fibroids are? The look changed to “if I had the chance, I will beat”… You can you explain to me what strength of material is? or explain to me the theory of relativity?…

Okay Madam, please do not be annoyed, “na play I dey play”…

Okay, jokes apart,  how does this herbal remedy work? Erm how am I supposed to know?

Madam, you know you are on other drugs, does this herbal remedy interact with other drugs you are taking?  And there was this “come young man you better behave yourself”… Well you know that look…

Erm Madam lest I forget, what are the side effects of this herbal remedy? “Haba” Doctor… These drugs are organic and have no side effect whatsoever…

Madam is beans you eat not organic? Shebi it has side effects… Which can range from firing, rumbling, peppering to praaaaaaaaa…

You say your medicine does not have any side effects at all? Yes oh…

Ironically, if a real doctor tells this patient anything, the patient will likely Google it… But when a wannabe is playing with the patient’s  life…They will likely look the other way…

Don’t kill yourself for nothing…

#hearword #OvdSpeaks #hearwordseries

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