Complex Evacuation Proves Crucial for Stroke Victim

When business travelers experience a medical emergency, finding immediate and appropriate care can be difficult. Such was the case for an American traveling to Japan on business.

During a flight to Tokyo, the international software company executive began to experience dizziness, nausea, and pain in his ear. By the time the plane had landed, he was feeling extremely ill and getting weaker by the minute. He immediately took a taxi to the local clinic in Narita. A colleague contacted FrontierMEDEX for help.

FrontierMEDEX Assistance Coordinators called the treating physician right away - however, there was little useful information. The physician had not performed an EKG, blood test, or chest x-ray - so any diagnosis would have been a guess. The patient's employer wanted him back in the United States as soon as possible and was willing to cover all costs of the return trip.

The patient's wife, a nurse, arrived in Japan the next day. She noted a slight right-side paralysis, drooping of the face, and weakness of the hand, and felt certain the patient had suffered a stroke. She was unhappy with the facility, and wanted to get her husband back home to Oregon for assessment.

The FrontierMEDEX Medical Director personally reviewed the case. As there was still no concrete diagnosis, he thought it ill-advised to send the patient home on a commercial flight. He suggested an air ambulance evacuation with a doctor and nurse on board.

FrontierMEDEX Assistance Coordinators worked quickly to arrange the complex evacuation which required air clearance in both Russia and Japan and two flight crews to avoid the mandated rest delays for pilots. All the while, the coordinators provided continuous updates to the patient, his family, and his employer. FrontierMEDEX also arranged for a ground ambulance to and from the airport and for admission into an Oregon medical facility.

The evacuation from Japan to Oregon was lengthy, but the patient remained stable, arrived safely, and was immediately treated by his family doctor. The family and the employer thanked the FrontierMEDEX team for arranging the difficult evacuation and for the excellent care provided by the air ambulance crew during the flight home.

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