Friday, November 28, 2014

The woman who came back to life

A remarkable story from the United States.

Forty-year-old Ruby Graupera-Cassimiro had been delivered of a healthy baby in a routine caesarean section when there was an unexpected complication. An amniotic fluid embolism in her bloodstream stopped her heart. Doctors say the condition is almost always fatal.

A team of more than a dozen doctors and nurses fought for 45 minutes to save her. They took turns to give CPR and gave repeated electric shocks. Nothing worked. Eventually the doctors stopped all lifesaving procedures. They told relatives there was nothing more they could do. Ruby's husband, mother and sister said their goodbyes and left the room.

They were about to record the time of death when Ruby's heart started beating again. Her family were praying in a room nearby when a nurse came in. "Keep praying," she said. "Her heart just started." 

When Ruby came round, despite being without heartbeat for 45 minutes, there was no trace of brain damage. There were no burns from the repeated shocks and there was no bruising from the CPR.

Then Ruby remembered what she thought was a dream she had had while she was unconscious. She met her late father, who told her it was not time for her to die.

"It was a complete miracle," said nurse Julie Ewing. "It was answered prayer. We were all there. We all witnessed it."

According to the doctors, there was no explanation for her heart starting beating again. Said Dr Amthony Dardano, president of the hospital's medical staff: "There's very few things in medicine that I've seen, working in the trauma centre myself and doing all the things that I do, that really were either unexplainable or miraculous. When I heard this story, that was the first thing that came to my mind."

Later, Ruby went back to the hospital with her baby for a tearful reunion with the doctors and nurses. "All I know is that I'm grateful to be here," she said. " I don't know why I was given this opportunity, but I'm very grateful for it."

You can read the full story here.

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