Amazing recovery

Cody Dietz from York, Pennsylvania, was a typical teenager. As a 17-year-old he liked to hang out with his friends and often had sleepovers. That had been the case when one night, something happened that changed his life forever.

Cody's mom Bonnie tried to reach her son on his cell phone to find out when he was expecting to get home and he didn't answer. When a short while later he still hadn't returned the call, she knew that something was wrong. She tried reaching him again and again but he didn't pick up. Bonnie started to panic.

You can find out more about Cody's story in this video:

Finally Cody's father's phone rang, but it wasn't Cody calling. It was Cody's friend who told them that Cody couldn't stand up and was mumbling unintelligibly. Holding the phone to Cody's mouth, all his father heard was a gurgling noise coming from the other end.

Cody's parents knew something was seriously amiss, so an ambulance was soon on its way. When the paramedics arrived, they first suspected that Cody had suffered a stroke. He was immediately taken to the closest hospital in a rescue helicopter and there their suspicions were confirmed. The hospital neurologist, Dr. Ray Rechwein, was extremely concerned about Cody's condition: "The timeline of the diagnosis is key. Many of the therapies have the best outcome when done within six hours. Cody's delay in diagnosis was close to 12 hours," he explained. Cody was in critical condition and an MRT scan showed that he had had a stroke on the left side of his brain. He only had a 20% chance of survival.

The time that had passed between Cody's stroke and his arrival at the hospital made it necessary for doctors to perform a complicated surgery that required the removal of the top of his skull to relieve the pressure on his brain. They would also lower Cody's body temperature to 33 °C (91 °F), a procedure used on patients undergoing open heart surgery or brain surgery. The cooling of the body reduces the brain's oxygen consumption and prevents brain cells from dying. After the operation, Cody spent three weeks in an induced coma while his parents feared for his life.

While Bonnie sat at her son's bedside and tried not to give up hope, she remembered that Cody had shown symptoms a week before suffering the stroke. He had spoken slowly and slurred his words and she had noticed constant trembling in his limbs. Now the reason for this strange behavior was clear.