Skip to content

Letang’s wife found him on ground after stroke

Feb 27, 2014, 12:25 PM EDT

Kris Letang AP

On Thursday, Pittsburgh defenseman Kris Letang met with media for the first time since it was learned he suffered a stroke in late January, and shared some emotional details about the incident.

Letang’s wife, Catherine, found him on the floor the morning of the stroke — Jan. 29 — at which time Letang said he was alert but unable to function.

“My family is worried,” he said, per the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review. “That was the difficult part, when you see your mom crying, and your wife crying.

“The day before, I was totally fine. Then, I woke up the next morning and it went like this.”

Letang has been out of action since the stroke and is unsure if he’ll be able to return this season. He has started light workouts and will reportedly have another series of tests in 2-3 weeks, at which time a decision will be made about his playing future for the remainder of the campaign.

“I would like to step on the ice and play,” Letang explained, per NHL.com. “But there are many things that won’t allow me to do that.”

Following the stroke, initial tests revealed Letang has a small hole in the wall of his heart. It’s a defect that all people have before birth, but the hole seals shut for most people — here’s more, from the Trib:

PFO, or patent foramen ovale, affects 20 to 25 percent of Americans, according to doctors. Some of the holes have a flap-like opening; others do not.

All babies have the hole before they are born. After birth, the hole usually closes within 72 hours, sometimes with the first breath.

There was no definitive diagnosis that PFO caused the stroke. According to the Trib’s Josh Yohe, Letang doesn’t intend to have surgery to correct the hole, noting that doctors believe there’s a good chance he will play hockey again.

For now, though, the Pittsburgh blueliner is simply focusing on the present — not the future.

“I have some good days, some bad days,” he explained. “I’m trying to improve every day. I see doctors twice a week. We’ll go from there.”

Latest Posts
  1. Pens looking to acquire a first round pick

    May 24, 2015, 9:43 AM EDT

    2014 NHL Draft - Round 2-7 2014 NHL Draft - Round 2-7

    GM Jim Rutherford has already begun talking with teams, which have multiple selections in the Top 30.

  2. Video: Ducks score three goals in 37 seconds to take third-period lead

    May 23, 2015, 10:54 PM EDT

    Toronto Maple Leafs play the Anaheim Ducks Getty Images

    Chicago had the lead. Gave it up. Tied it up again.

  3. WATCH LIVE: Ducks at Blackhawks, Western Conference Final Game 4

    May 23, 2015, 7:05 PM EDT

    Getty Images

    Anaheim can put Chicago on the brink of elimination.

  4. Kelowna Rockets fined $500 for complaining about officiating at Memorial Cup

    May 23, 2015, 4:44 PM EDT

    Portland Winterhawks v Kelowna Rockets Portland Winterhawks v Kelowna Rockets

    Oilers’ prospects Leon Draisaitl and Marc-Olivier Roy were among those who received 10-minute misconducts on Friday night.

  5. Report: Devils made offer to KHL forward Sergei Kalinin

    May 23, 2015, 3:43 PM EDT

    Sergei Kalinin Sergei Kalinin

    His teammate Vladimir Sobotka is likely staying in Russia.

  6. Cooper on replacing Bishop: ‘That is asinine to me’

    May 23, 2015, 2:45 PM EDT

    Ben Bishop Ben Bishop

    The Bolts’ starter has allowed five goals in each of his last two starts.

  7. Report: John Cassaday to replace Tim Leiweke as MLSE president and CEO

    May 23, 2015, 11:45 AM EDT

    MLSE MLSE

    A formal announcement could come as early as next week.

  8. Report: Coyotes to hire analytics guru John Chayka

    May 23, 2015, 10:40 AM EDT

    Coyotes-logo

    He’ll serve as an assistant to GM Don Maloney.

Featured video

Babcock has his work cut out in Toronto
Top 10 NHL Player Searches
  1. H. Lundqvist (1629)
  2. S. Stamkos (1529)
  3. K. Versteeg (1347)
  4. P. Kane (1329)
  5. C. Crawford (1306)