Young mom in critical condition after stroke - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Young mom in critical condition after stroke

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Family and friends of a young Iowa mom are struggling to understand how she suffered a stroke, leaving her in critical condition. 

Nicole Rhoads, a mother of three, from Grundy County is in critical condition at the University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics. 

Family tells KWWL, Nicole went in to get her neck adjusted at a chiropractor on Monday. Following her visit, she started feeling dizzy, vomited, and had blurred vision. Their family would later come to learn she suffered a stroke. Nicole was rushed to the Grundy County Memorial Hospital, and later airlifted to the University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics. 

According to Nicole's family, doctors at the University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics are being very specific as to what caused her to spiral into critical condition, saying it was neck manipulation by chiropractor that triggered her stroke. 

Nicole's friend Crystal Greer is struggling to understand how her friends visit to the chiropractor turned into a stroke. 

"It's just a very scary thing to think she walked out that door that morning smiling, and telling her mom she'll be back," said Greer. "And she didn't come back, moments later her life was on the line."

Doctors tell the family, Nicole suffered from what's known as vertebral artery dissection, a torn artery in her neck that leads to the brain. According to the Emergency Medicine Journal, "Vertebral artery dissection (vad) associated with chiropractic cervical manipulation is a rare but potentially disabling condition."

"Family and friends are all praying that she's going to be okay," said Greer. "And she's going to pull through this because she's a very strong woman, strong-willed woman, and I know she's not going to quit fighting. She's going to continue on and we just wait."

Meantime, Greer wants to make sure something like this, doesn't happen to anyone else. 

"We love you very much Nicole and we're all praying for you," said Greer.

Model Katie May who died suddenly this past February at the age of 34, died as a result of the same complication. May died just days after she went in to see her chiropractor to get her neck adjusted. 

The family has a fund set up at the Green Belt Bank and Trust in Grundy Center. 

If you are interested in helping the family with medical or travel expenses, please reach out to Crystal Greer at 319-215-5911. 

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