AVM Survivors Network

Leave of absence, returning to work


What are some of your experiences with doctors and jobs allowing you enough time off to recover? I am four weeks post bleed in my brain stem with am embolism scheduled this week, but my doctor only wrote to release me three weeks. The leave of absence department basically told me if I don’t get my doc to extend the note today I will lose my job. I’m functioning ok now but I still feel horribly weak and have terrible headaches- I can’t imagine being able to drive and work right now. How have you handled time off from work? How did you transition back to work?


well i was in the situation and tpld my doctors the headaches were getting worse and could she put me on sickness benfit i also talked to work about the situation i was in themif u are straight with ur doctor and work they will understand its te fear of nothing be straight with them hopefully eveyone will work out let me know please god bless mags


Risa....You are allowed 12 weeks of "unpaid" medical leave due to the Family Medical Leave Act. Speak to your doctor ASAP and mention that due to your headaches and weakness you don't feel well enough to return to work. Therefore, it can fax a note to your employer. You should have at last 8 weeks left due to FMLA.

Good Luck!


But make sure you talk to someone in HR and tell them that you are using FMLA. It will make things easier going forward.


Hello, Risa!Remember every day that YOU MADE IT!! You are ALIVE!! That is the most important thing! I had an AVM on my spinal cord that bled into my brain and was in hospital for 43 day. It took me a year to get, what I thought was better. So I went back to work teaching fourth grade and after the first day realized I could not do it anymore. I had to take early retirement. After two years I was as good as I was going to get, and am just happy every day, to be alive. Good luck to you. Life is your most important gift. All the best to you! Donna


Hi Risa - I would definitely talk to your HR dept tomorrow to make sure you go through the correct process and everything is documented correctly. Please let us know what happens. Best of luck.


When my bleed occurred 10 years ago, I started using sick time that I had accrued. When that ran out and I wasn’t getting any better, as a county employee, other employees could give up sick days for me, up to a certain amount. Amazingly enough people gave up enough days to fill that slot and tried to get the county to extend the amount since there were lots and lots of hours left over but to no avail. Since they couldn’t fix my AVM or get rid of it, I was granted full disability. I hate it, and would do anything to be able to get back to work, but with the increasing headaches and memory loss, and having to walk with crutches I couldn’t get back to work no bad how much I want to. I hope things go great with you and you find the answers you need.


Talk to your doctor and explain your situation along with your HR dept about your medical leave policy. There are usually some more paperwork involved but as long as your doctor knows what is going on it usually is not a problem. Good luck