The family physician examined Kyle and recommended a visit to a satellite office of the local children's hospital. There, Kyle was evaluated for migraines and given pain medication that "made him feel really loopy," Keith says. "His condition didn't improve, so the next day, we took him to the ER."
The Gobles took Kyle to the emergency department at Children's Mercy Kansas City. Pediatric neurologists believed Kyle might have experienced a series of small strokes and admitted him.
"Five days later, we thought Kyle was ready to go home," Keith says. "He had weakness on his right side, but we expected to treat it with aspirin and physical therapy. If you walked into the room and looked around, you would have asked who the patient was. He was himself. There was nothing unusual to notice."
But then, as the family prepared for discharge, Kyle's condition deteriorated suddenly. He was "out of it," Keith says, and he began to vomit. Kyle's care team ordered another MRI, which at last revealed something concrete. A blood clot had moved into Kyle's basilar artery, blocking blood flow to the brainstem.
Kyle was rushed to The University of Kansas Health System, where the region's uniquely qualified multidisciplinary care team was ready to take immediate action in the Advanced Comprehensive Stroke Center. Neurointerventionalists and anesthesiologists were waiting for Kyle in the ambulance bay and immediately transferred him to the neurointerventional suite.
"We knew from the team at Children's Mercy that Kyle had a blocked artery that could result in the worst possible stroke, 'locked-in syndrome,' in which a patient is fully aware but unable to move anything but the eyes," says neurointerventionalist Michael Abraham, MD.
Under direct X-ray guidance, Dr. Abraham advanced catheters and wires into Kyle's basilar artery followed by a stent retriever, used to grasp and pull out the clot, opening the occluded basilar artery.
"Though Kyle experienced a small stroke during the hours of the blockage, the combination of a collaborative team and advanced technology prevented a devastating event," Dr. Abraham says. "We quickly initiated physical, occupational and speech therapies, which Kyle continued during inpatient rehab. With his hard work and the great support of his family, Kyle has made a remarkable recovery."