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Penny’s remarkable rehab journey and recovery post stroke

When Rye grandmother Penny Berkshire had a stroke last year, she was left paralysed on her right side.

However after working with the rehabilitation team at Golf Links Road and completing the Stroke Detours Program, she can now walk again, drive again and is hoping to be back on the golf course soon.

“I had the stroke on 20 June last year,” recalls Penny.

“I went to use the computer, but I couldn’t type in my password. I thought that was strange.”

“Then I collapsed. I thought don’t be silly get up, so I got up but then I fell straight back down again.”

It wasn’t until she got to Frankston Hospital that Penny knew she’d had a stroke.

“I didn’t realise what stroke was like. I didn’t realise it affected anybody, of any age,” says Penny.

“By that night, I was paralysed down my right side.”  

“I was in hospital for one week, then I went to Golf Links Road Rehabilitation for six weeks, trying to walk again – I was still in a wheelchair at this stage.”

When she went home, allied health staff from the Stroke Detours Program were there to help with her recovery.

“The Stroke Detours team that came to my home were fantastic!” she says.

“I was having trouble getting moving – they gave me exercises and massages help me move my wrist and helped my walking.”

“It was good, they were lovely.”

A year on, Penny is still doing exercises the team at Peninsula Health taught her, and has made a remarkable recovery.

“I’m back to my sewing getting back towards tai chi.”

She has some advice for other people who have a stroke.

“You’re scared when you first have the stroke, but once you get to rehab it’s important to be positive and have a happy outlook on life.”

“You’ve got to do the hard work yourself – everyone is there to guide you, but you can’t get back to normal without doing the work.”

Women and stroke

+ Stroke is the second biggest killer of Australian women and kills more women than breast cancer.

+ More women than men die of stroke.

+ Women tend to have strokes when they are older.