James Fike – stroke patient success story

Mission 2 Medicine

Seeing beyond the patient to the person

James Fike and his doctor Chisom Nwachukwu James “Jef” Fike was moved by the care Chisom
Daisy Nwachukwu, MD, gave him after his stroke.

It’s 4 p.m., and Chisom Daisy Nwachukwu, MD, is finally wrapping up her patient rounds at Methodist Mansfield Medical Center, long after they should have been completed. But Dr. Daisy, as she’s fondly called, has taken extra time with her patients throughout the day.

“With every patient, I don’t see a case; I see a person, a human being,” she says. “I sit down with my patients, and we can talk about anything, like football or their dogs. I want to break the shell in the doctor-patient relationship.”

Going this extra mile takes extra time, but Dr. Daisy believes it’s worth it. She can see the evidence in patients like James “Jef” Fike.

Time well spent

When Jef arrived at Methodist Mansfield last June, he wasn’t sure what was wrong.

“My speech was slurred and I had trouble using my right hand to fill out the paperwork, but otherwise, I felt fine,” he says. Learning he’d had a stroke came as quite a shock.

Days later his stroke symptoms worsened, and he lost use of his right side. The condition also took an emotional toll on the 59-year-old husband and father. Fortunately, he had Dr. Daisy.

Wanting to make sure that Jef felt encouraged, Dr. Daisy rounded on his room four or five times a day and even gave the Fikes her personal phone number so they could call with any questions.

“You never got the feeling that Dr. Daisy was just there to do a job and move on,” Jef says. “The biggest thing was that she took the time; you don’t forget people like that.”

A chance to say thanks

When Jef left Methodist Mansfield for rehabilitation last summer, he lacked all movement in his right side. When he returned in January this year to thank Dr. Daisy in person, he was able to walk up to her, give her a hug, and say “thank you” without slurred speech. The improvement in his condition floored the hospitalist.

“I got very emotional,” she says. “I was so impressed with him, so proud of him.”

Jef fights back his own tears when he speaks of his experience and of the physician who took the time to not only care for him but also know him as a person.

“You kind of hope that you get the right doctor, and I believe I did.”