Life doesn't end because you have a stroke..... A Message from Peter

Whilst this can unfortunately be the case, at the centre of the Peter Couche Foundation’s mission and vision – “to advance research into brain repair, especially in post-stroke patients”. This is both the official raison det’re of this organisation and the umbrella catch-phrase used to describe our many interests.

The central point here is that there is way too much happening, from a purely research perspective, for post-stroke sufferers to abandon hope now, and effectively “throw in the towel” in what may well be the biggest battle likely to be faced by that individual in his/her lifetime. People are, in my limited experience at any rate, far more tolerant, understanding, and kind that is generally thought to be the case. Therefore, if one can put up with the, sometimes awful, and deeply embarrassing details associated with living in a wheelchair for just a little longer, then it is reasonable to suggest that, based on the current rate of growth in medical research, help for stroke sufferers is imminent.

For example, the Peter Couche Committee members were fortunate to receive a presentation by the eloquent and clearly committed Ms. Annabel Sorby-Adams, one of our Peter Couche Foundation PhD Scholarship recipients, working directly in the Stroke sector at the University of Adelaide prior to her departure for Europe, where she is to fulfil a number of speaking obligations. It is very important that we attempt to grasp the significance of her report, and what this could mean for all stroke victims.

In essence, there is a developing theory which could alleviate much of the suffering of stroke victims if treatment is applied soon enough post-stroke. 

The leading cause of death in the first week following stroke occurs directly as the result of swelling in the brain, and associated rise in brain pressure, so to reduce this swelling as soon as possible is a major step forward. In order to achieve this, she has utilised an effective treatment known as the NK1 Receptor Antagonist. This has proven to be effective for both the immediate (4 hours) and out to as late as 5 days following stroke with reduction in brain-swelling, in initial tests. What is needed now is clear efficacy of this treatment for post-stroke conditions in the form of an official clinical trial, which Annabel’s findings will provide the underpinning evidence to get this underway. We will of course watch developments here with great interest, as this is likely to break new ground for stroke research, and thus we ever-so slowly inch closer toward unravelling the enigma that is called STROKE.

One of the major aims of the Peter Couche Foundation is to significantly improve, and indeed widen, the dissemination of the latest information and research knowledge on Stroke and Stroke related matters to interested parties and would-be interested parties as efficiently and quickly as possible. To this end, an annual Stroke Forum is held at the SAHMRI building on the city western end of North Terrace, inviting researchers, academics, patients and stroke survivors, and of course those with merely a particular interest in this area.

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The second Forum was held on Monday 27th November 2017 and was extremely well attended, covering topics as diverse as the existing paucity of information and services in the general stroke area in this state, to the individual stroke experience of one man. In this way, the Forum not only helps to disseminate the latest information concerning stroke, but significantly enriches the general conversation. The Forum is rapidly becoming the signature event for the Peter Couche Foundation, helping to bring light and life to an otherwise unchartered area of medical knowledge.

Thank you for your ongoing support.

Peter Couche