• Friday, March 01, 2024
businessday logo

BusinessDay

Sharon Stone: An unheard cry for help

E843D94B-DF61-48D0-8F65-97B6D1F49ED0

In a stunning revelation, Hollywood icon Sharon Stone took a bold step and spoke about her life-altering battle with a near-fatal stroke. The actress, well known for her iconic role in Basic Instinct, revealed her difficult experience in a recent interview with British Vogue, exposing the gender bias she encountered during her medical crisis.

Stone narrated in detail the fateful day in 2001 when a life-threatening haemorrhage left her with a brain bleed that lasted for nine excruciating days. In a surprising discovery, she revealed that doctors initially dismissed her symptoms and almost sent her home without treatment.

“They missed it with the first angiogram and decided that I was faking it,” Stone said to Outlet, the renowned fashion magazine; shedding light on the shocking disregard she faced. Unbeknownst to her, a false-negative angiogram led a physician to plan an exploratory brain surgery until Stone firmly pushed back.

The incident led her to a disturbing realisation about the disheartening reality women face in medical settings. “What I learned through that experience is that in a medical setting, women often just aren’t heard,” Stone said; lamenting the lack of attention given to women’s health concerns.

Fortunately, Stone’s stoic persistence and the intervention of a determined friend saw her duly attended to. Doctors ultimately agreed to conduct a second angiogram, leading to a life-altering diagnosis: a ruptured artery, a condition that can arise from physical trauma or other factors. With this vital revelation, Stone received treatment from the esteemed neurosurgeon Dr. Michael Lawton.

Read also: Hollywood 2023 blockbuster fails highlights year of financial turmoil

Despite her triumph over the initial misdiagnosis, Stone underwent a grueling recovery, facing not only physical challenges but also the daunting reality of her acting career rapidly fading away. The stroke left her disabled, causing her marriage to crumble and losing custody of her son.

“I bled so much… that the right side of my face fell, my left foot was dragging severely, and I was stuttering very badly,” Stone candidly revealed, providing a glimpse into the immense suffering she endured. She further disclosed the emergence of painful knuckle-like knots that plagued her head, creating indescribable agony.

However, Stone’s was determined to move beyond her previous challenge; her resolute spirit led her to find a new purpose beyond the silver screen. As a board member of the Barrow Neurological Foundation, she religiously supports Lawton’s Barrow Neurological Institute, turning her firsthand experience into a beacon of hope for others in need.

“I lost so much, and I could have allowed that to define me,” Stone shared, noting the tremendous adversity she has faced. Despite her losses, both personally and professionally, she chooses to stand tall, defying the odds and inspiring others to rise in the face of adversity.

Sharon Stone’s astounding journey serves as an urgent reminder of the gender biases that still prevail within the medical field. By courageously sharing her story, she hopes to ignite a much-needed conversation and drive change so that women’s voices are not dismissed but genuinely heard when it matters the most.