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Magically Healed Recent Survivor of a Severe TBI

October 11, 2022 Lindsay Epstein
Magically Healed Recent Survivor of a Severe TBI

I was cycling in San Diego in April 2021, and hit from behind by an SUV going ~40mph.  That vehicle destroyed me & I destroyed it! Yet it drove away. I was unconscious. My forehead split open, my front left lobe was damaged & bleeding.

When the ambulance came, I had a Glasgow Coma Scale (GCS) of 3. Every brain injury patient is assessed for a GCS. The scale ranges from 3 (completely unresponsive)  to 15 (responsive). Severe TBIs are GCS 3 to 8. I had 3: the most severe rating. With GCS of 3, most patients (89%) die within 30 days, 7% are comatose, & 4% have permanent physical & neurological damage. Doctors told my parents I would not survive.

Many broken bones & surgeries, including 3 brain surgeries. One was to implant a Shunt to save me from my newly acquired Hydrocephalus, which is when liquid no longer automatically gets discharged from the brain & it’s fatal if not diagnosed and treated. Only 2% of TBI survivors acquire hydrocephalus. Adult-onset is quite rare.

I also acquired hypothyroid, as my pituitary gland was damaged. My pelvis was shattered & now has a 6-inch long, rather wide screw holding it together, plus some additional fractures. I can no longer do splits, & destined to have severe arthritis. My nose & all the bones in my eye sockets broke, & nearly lost an eye. Doctors thought I’d be blind. Fortunately incorrect: now I just need glasses.

I was in the hospital for 5 months. I have no memory of 4 of them. Weeks in a medically-induced coma; when I came out, I had to re-learn to walk, talk, dress, & recognize my family. I had feeding tubes in my belly & was sleeping in a locked tent on my bed, both until 3 days before I was released.

Released at the end of Sept 2021: doctors said I would always need a wheelchair, feeding tubes, and an at-home nurse. Inaccurate! I’ve returned to independent living, hiking, cycling, & travelling.

Hope I can return to work at some point. But moreso: I hope to get into public speaking & promote public policy.

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