Father of Five Recovers from Massive Stroke Thanks to Fast Response, Brain Clot Removal Procedure

Geoffrey Schreiber was able to celebrate the holidays with his family after being treated at North Shore University Hospital for massive stroke.

Not long after Geoffrey Schreiber dropped off his kids at school on November 3, 2016, he returned home and suddenly fell over the bed and struggled to get up. The 38-year-old father of five from Huntington Station, NY, had suffered a stroke.

His wife, Erin, immediately saw that he was in distress. The left side of his face drooped. She recognized the symptoms of a stroke and called 911.

Mr. Schreiber was sent to Huntington Hospital, a member of Northwell Health.  After a neurological exam, Mr. Schreiber was given the clot-busting drug, tissue plasminogen activator (tPA). If given intravenously within the first three hours after the start of stroke symptoms, tPA has been shown to significantly reduce the effects of stroke and lessen the chance of permanent disability. 

After Mr. Schreiber received tPA, he was transferred by helicopter to North Shore University Hospital, another member of Northwell Health. To remove the clot, Mr. Schreiber underwent a neuroendovascular procedure performed by Jeffrey M. Katz, MD, the hospital’s chief of neurovascular services. The clot was removed with a technique that combines the use a device called Solitaire, a self-expanding columnar metal cage, and a Penumbra suction catheter, a flexible tube that is navigated from the artery in the leg to the blocked artery in the brain.

“Once the clot is engaged by the Solitaire, suction is applied and both devices are pulled out of the patient with the clot attached,” said Dr. Katz. “This technique allows the neuroendovascular surgeon to reopen blocked arteries effectively and efficiently. In treating Mr. Schreiber, we also found that he had atrial fibrillation, which was the cause of his stroke.”

Mr. Schreiber was able to return to work Dec 7th and is looking forward to what 2017 has to bring. “I am grateful that I was lucky to pull through this massive stroke,” said Mr. Schreiber, who has five young children, ages 11, 9, 7 and 5, along with a three-month-old baby girl. “I have been through a lot. For me to have a stroke only a week after I turned 38 years old – it was not in my plans. I am very lucky that I was home with my wife and she was able to get me medical attention.

“Dr. Katz was very informative and made sure my family understood everything. He had a great bedside manner and made me feel very comfortable,” Mr. Schreiber added. “I am very grateful for my family and friends who have helped us through this difficult time and so thankful for all of the support they have given me. Never take your life for granted, because you never know when your time will be up.”

To learn more about Northwell Health’s Stroke Center, click here.

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About Northwell Health

Northwell Health is New York State’s largest health care provider and private employer, with 21 hospitals and over 550 outpatient facilities. We care for more than two million people annually in the metro New York area and beyond, thanks to philanthropic support from our communities. Our 61,000 employees – 15,000+ nurses and nearly 3,400 physicians, including nearly 2,700 members of Northwell Health Physician Partners -- are working to change health care for the better. We’re making breakthroughs in medicine at the Feinstein Institute. We're training the next generation of medical professionals at the visionary Hofstra Northwell School of Medicine and the School of Graduate Nursing and Physician Assistant Studies. And we offer health insurance through CareConnect. For information on our more than 100 medical specialties, visit Northwell.edu.

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