August 22, 2014

Rep. Mike Kiegerl hospitalized in Topeka

Danedri Thompson

dthompson@gardnernews.com

Rep. Mike Kiegerl is in a Topeka hospital after suffering a mini-stroke at the close of the

Mike Kiegerl

legislative session yesterday.

“They’re telling me I’m going to be OK,” Kiegerl said.

Kiegerl, who represents Gardner, Edgerton and parts of Spring Hill and Olathe in the state legislature, said he wasn’t feeling well Feb. 14 as the day’s session was drawing to a close.

He turned to Rep. TerriLois Gregory, R-Baldwin City, to tell her he wasn’t feeling well and that he was going to head home to Olathe.

“I said, ‘Mike, stick your tongue out at me,’ and his tongue did not come out straight. It curved,” she said. “I knew then he’d probably suffered a mini-stroke.”

She remembered the stroke test from an e-mail forward.

“If the tongue goes to the side, that’s a good indicator. That was just one of those forward, forward, forward e-mail things,” she said.

Gregory got a doctor, and Kiegerl was rushed to a Topeka hospital.

“Initially, it was just slurring speech, but then it progressed,” Kiegerl said. “My left arm was numb.”

Gregory said Kiegerl’s mind remains “clear and alert.” Despite continued slurred speech, he participated in some committee work on Feb. 15 via telephone.

“I have not lost my mental faculties,” he said. “But I’ve lost my ability to express myself.”

He will be doing therapy to regain his full speech abilities in the coming weeks. He may be transferred to a local hospital in the next few days.

Kiegerl represents Gardner, Edgerton, and parts of Spring Hill and Olathe in the Kansas Legislature. He is serving his third term in the Statehouse.

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