Columbus woman to appear on the “Today Show” Friday
On Tuesday morning, Carolyn Egan sat in a chair at the Columbus Beauty Shop, preparing for a very special trip.
On Friday morning, Egan will be on the set of “The Today Show” in New York City as one of about 20 patients from around the country who have survived serious strokes due to relatively new treatment methods being promoted by the Society of NeuroInterventional Surgery and its Get Ahead of Stroke initiative.
Egan’s doctor from the Swedish Medical Center in Denver asked her to participate in the outing and TV appearance.
It will be a whirlwind trip, as Egan arrived Wednesday and almost immediately was whisked away to a Yankees game. On Thursday, Egan’s group was scheduled to visit the New York Stock Exchange followed by a meeting with Society of NeuroInterventional Surgery doctors.
“I’m looking forward to seeing the doctors,” said Egan Tuesday morning.
Egan will also be giving a 20-minute filmed interview for the society about her experience to help drive the awareness campaign.
The week ends with an appearance on the “Today Show” at Rockefeller Center. Accompanying Egen will be her daughter Debbie and granddaughter Kiah.
A LIFE NEARLY LOST
Egan remembers almost nothing about the four days in 2012 in which she nearly widowed her husband, Chuck, but instead became a medical miracle. Early one Monday morning she passed out and was taken to the Columbus hospital by ambulance, then on to Billings and flown to the Swedish Medical in Denver.
A team of eight doctors treated Egan and determined the stroke was caused by a large clot on one side of her head.
“This was all a great big clot,” said Egan, motioning to one side of her head.
By the third night, her husband had summoned their children to Denver with the news that Carolyn’s chances of death were 95 percent. By the following morning, things turned drastically and she suddenly was given a 95 percent chance of survival. That afternoon, she awoke.
Using a new technique, Egan was injected with the venom of an insect, which cleared the clot substantially. What was left behind was suctioned out. A bit that doctors were not able to get to affects Egan’s speech, but that is perhaps the only lingering sign of her brush with death.
She spent 10 days at St. Vincent’s in Billings and then returned home. Another three or so months saw her in speech and other therapy for three days a week.
“I have come out of it real well,” said Carolyn.