Budleigh hairdresser’s stroke ordeal

Dream holiday was cut short by sickness bug

A BUDLEIGH hairdresser says a simple eye test could have saved his life after he suffered a devastating stroke when a sickness bug cut short a dream holiday.

Daniel Neaves revealed he owes the town’s Bennett and Rogers Opticians ‘everything’ as he marked a remarkable recovery by returning to work on Tuesday.

“I’ve been such a lucky lad,” he told the Journal.

Salon owner, Daniel, saw a fortnight’s cruise across the Mediterranean, a 40th birthday gift from wife Jackie, ended by the Norovirus just five days into the trip last month.


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He spent three days hooked up to a drip and unable to eat in a hospital in Palma, Majorca, before returning home.

Daniel had no idea that severe dehydration from the bug had contributed to a blood clot that had formed on his brain.

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The three-time British Hairdresser of The Year nominee only realised he was in danger when he went for an eye test after struggling with his sight.

“They told me I needed to get to hospital straight away,” said Daniel.

“I had a brain scan and was told I’d had a full-blown stroke.

“You never think it’s going to happen to you. It still doesn’t seem real.

“I only have one holiday a year, so having to come back from that early was bad enough.

“I really didn’t know I’d had a stroke, apart from the fact that my vision was slightly out.

“If I hadn’t gone to get checked out, who knows what would have happened.

“I could have been paralysed, left slurring my words - or worse.

“From now on, I’m going to enjoy life. I’m 99.9 per cent back to normal.

“I want to tell people ‘when in doubt, get it checked out’. Sometimes tomorrow can be too late.”

Daniel praised the ‘fantastic’ stroke unit in Exeter and thanked his staff, wife and customers for their ‘phenomenal’ support.

“I couldn’t have asked for better staff - they have been amazing,” he said.

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