HEALTHY LIVING
03/18/2013 02:54 pm ET

Dystextia: Man's Bizarre Text Messages Were Clue To Acute Ischemic Stroke, Researchers Say

A string of bizarre text messages helped to clue doctors in to a man's acute ischemic stroke, according to a new study.

The study, which will be presented at the annual meeting of the American Academy of Neurology, details a 40-year-old man's experience with "dystextia." He had texted his wife while on a business trip in Detroit, saying:

Oh baby your;

I am happy.

And then just a couple minutes later…

I am out of it, just woke up, can't make sense, I can't even type, call if ur awake, love you.

The man end up going to the hospital, where doctors noticed that he had slight weakness on one side of his face, but otherwise were unable to see any obvious signs of neurological problems. But when they asked him to try typing "the doctor needs a new blackberry" into a smartphone, he instead typed:

Tjhe Doctor nddds a new bb.

When doctors asked if he had typed it correctly, he said yes, he did.

Because of this case study, the doctors from Henry Ford Hospital said that "dystextia" could be a sign of stroke, especially when the person seems otherwise fine but something is clearly off.

"Text messaging is a common form of communication with more than 75 billion texts sent each month," study researcher Dr. Omran Kaskar, M.D., a neurologist at Henry Ford Hospital, said in a statement. "Besides the time-honored tests we use to determine aphasia in diagnosing stroke, checking for dystextia may well become a vital tool in making such a determination."

Just last year, another case study for "dystextia" was published in the Archives of Neurology, where a woman had a bizarre text message exchange with her husband that eventually led to her undergoing an MRI brain scan. The scan revealed that she had suffered an acute ischemic stroke.

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