Food & Drink Magazine

How Much Does A Stroke Cost?

By Chuck Underwood @brandnewvegan

Anyone who has been in the hospital knows that medical costs add up quickly, besides what you already pay for insurance.
Fortunately, at 57 yrs old, I had never been to the hospital… that is until February 24, 2020, when I had a minor stroke.
So if you’ve ever been curious – “I wonder… How Much Does a Stroke Cost? This article is for you.

How Much Does A Stroke Cost?

Let me just start off by saying:

ALL strokes are costly!

  • You may lose control of one side of your body
  • You may lose the ability to walk
  • You may lose the ability to communicate
  • You may lose the ability to control your bladder or bowels.
  • You may lose your LIFE!

Many of us have heard that our plant-based doc and hero, Dr. John McDougall had a stroke at an early age. It wasn’t until I finally met him face to face that I saw the effects of his stroke with my own eyes.

He walks with a very noticeable (and what looks to be painful) limp. I’m sure this alone has cost him some quality of life.

My Aunt had a stroke that left one side of her mouth permanently drooped. Although it seemed to be only a cosmetic effect, I’m sure it cost her both emotionally and mentally.

I myself lost the ability (temporarily) to speak clearly or type without hitting all the wrong keys. As a blogger? If I can’t talk or type – I am pretty much done for. This could have cost me my career as a blogger!

So you can’t really put a price tag on the physical, emotional, or psychological effects a stroke can give someone. There are just too many ways a stroke can hurt you and the long-term effects can be devastating.

But then comes the bill….

So if you HAVE ever wondered about the financial costs…well I can tell you first hand.

PS. It’s a lot.

How Much Does A Stroke Cost?

How Much Does A Stroke Cost?

On February 24, 2020, I went to the Emergency Room in the early part of the afternoon – and I would not leave until the same time the next day.

So basically, between the ER and my own room, I was in the hospital for roughly 24 hrs.

I was checked out by the ER docs, had multiple CT scans, an MRI, and a slew of other assorted tests and labs, and then put into a semi-private room overnight for observation.

Total Cost: ~$24,000
My cost alone: $8,100
What I still owe: $5,429
I will be paying $680/mo until March of 2021.

And yes, I have insurance.

So let’s break that down so you see exactly what some of these charges are:

  • Three separate CT scans: $7,542
  • Emergency Room: $3,451
  • Room & Board: $3,060
  • MRI: $2,998
  • Other assorted cardiology tests: $1,938

Just those 5 things cost nearly $20,000 folks. My room and board, for JUST ONE NIGHT, was $3000. That’s one expensive hotel room!

I can’t say that I would ever recommend this particular hotel either as the bed was very uncomfortable and the food was terrible!

All joking aside, they DID do a very good job. They got me in VERY quickly and I had the majority of scans completed before I was admitted to my room.

As far as how they treated me, well I covered that in a series of articles I wrote about the whole experience. I’ll link those below if you want to read them.

Needless to say, I am VERY fortunate it was just a minor stroke and that I had been eating plant-based for the last 10 years.

I am also glad I knew exactly who to call, and what to do, once I got home – to get off those nasty meds they had me on.

I called Dr. Ess, emailed Dr. McDougall, and went on basically a McDougall MWL Diet to lose 20 lbs and bring my blood pressure back to normal. I was completely med-free in 30 days.

Bottom line folks: Strokes are nothing to sneeze at. They are costly in many ways, least of which is financial. But they are costly THAT way too.

There’s no time like the present to start eating healthy and begin to exercise a little if you can. Cut back on the calorie-dense foods, eat more veggies and starches, and try to get a little walk in every day.
In my FB Group, we even started a weekly thing called Walkin’ Wednesdays to hold ourselves accountable (and post pretty pics of our walks).

Eat right and exercise.

We’ve heard it all our lives and it turns out it’s true.
Not only could it possibly help save you from all the physical, emotional, and psychological damage from a stroke – it can help keep your hard-earned money in the bank too.


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