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Helping people feel they are not alone.

SUE THELWELL is stroke services coordinator at Coventry's University Hospital.

She regularly attends the Stroke Survivors group to offer professional advice for patients and carers.

She said the drop-in cafe was an opportunity for stroke survivors to meet others who have had strokes, share problems and know they are not alone.

"It is an opportunity for chat, support and advice. I tend to attend in case people need professional advice from being referred to social services to physiotherapy.

"Eighty-five per cent of strokes are due to a blood clot, while 15 per cent are due to a bleed in the brain. But every person's stroke can affect them differently.

"We have 700 to 1,000 strokes a year in Coventry.

"I work closely with all members of the stroke team. My role is very varied.

"We continually try to make improvements for stroke patients including those discharged back into the community.

There was a community rehabilitation team for patients with neurological conditions, including strokes.

"When patients go home myself or a stroke specialist nurse will visit for six weeks to see if they need further rehab, check medicals, their diet and blood pressure and refer them to this type of support group.

"We are finding a lot of younger people are now having strokes, even in their late 20s which you rarely saw 30 years ago."
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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:Coventry Evening Telegraph (England)
Date:Jul 5, 2008
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