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King Middle student recovering after mini-stroke last month

Ramon Rios
rrios@srpressgazette.com

MILTON — Zander Jordan, the 13-year-old King Middle School student that experienced a mini-stroke during his art class on Dec 4, has been medically restricted from attending classes.

RELATED: Middle school staff’s quick action credited with saving student

His doctors have classified him as hospital/homebound, all due to a grade three concussion he suffered in a fall on Nov. 17.

Sundae Wark, Jordan’s mother, and the doctors who first treated the teenager on Dec. 4, agreed that if it had not been for the quick and decisive actions of art teacher Lindsay Pharo and school health technician Debbie Busby, things could have turned out much worse.

Doctors have concluded Jordan’s mini-stroke, or TIA episode, was the result an accident he experienced Nov. 17 while rehearsing for a school talent show.

“He signed up to do a jam skating - where you dance on skates,” Wark said. “He was doing a handstand and when he went to land it his foot went one way and his leg and body another way and he fell backwards and hit his head.”

Wark said he landed in a very awkward position so she knew his leg was broken.

“We took him to Santa Rosa Hospital where they said he broke his leg. We told them that he hit his head, they didn't seem that worried (about the head injury), they just gave him some Tylenol,” Wark said.

When Jordan went to the orthopedists he found out he had broken his leg in four places and was put in a cast. He then went back to school.

On Dec. 4, Jordan suffered the mini-stroke in his art class. Jordan has epilepsy and his history of seizures is well known by his teacher, but this time he was passing out. He would regaining consciousness, but was incoherent and would pass out again.

He was admitted to Sacred Heart Children's Hospital in Pensacola and stayed for five days of testing. Wark said the tests showed his brain was swelling and that was causing the issues.

Jordan went home for one day and was back at the hospital the next day, Dec. 10.

This time his stay was almost two weeks. Several more tests were completed and different drugs were administered, including an intravenous infusion of dihydroergotamine for headaches and migraines.

“They sent us home on Dec. 19th but we've been having to go back twice a week to get fluids and medication,” Wark said. “The final diagnosis was a grade three concussion, which caused everything — all the issues that he had.”

“We are doing the homebound program,” she added. “The doctor thinks that it will be best because his brain is not going down at the moment. He can’t handle a lot of noise and commotion around him.”

Jordan is also seeing specialists that have started treating him.

The homebound program allows the student to continue their education but in a home setting. Santa Rosa County Schools have programs for those students. Doctors have told the family that it may take three months or more for his brain to heal.

Wark wants to thank all the visitors her son has had - from his Boy Scout friends Tripp, William, James and Joshua of Troop 451, to his visit from King Middle School librarian Scott Cole as well as a visit by his favorite comic book store employees at TBS Comics, Zach Anderson and Hunter Gatherer.

Although both parents have full time jobs, they have had to miss a lot of work. Family friends have set up a “Meal Train” that helps the family with food, especially with Jordan’s specialized diet his doctors have prescribed. If you are interested in participating, go to https://mealtrain.com/n53d77.

Wark added that doctors told her there is no specific date when Jordan’s brain will heal. Lasting conditions may include short-term memory loss and irritability.

“When his head heels and he has no more passing out spells, he’ll be able to go back to school,” she said.