Scans of her brain revealed that an aneurysm had ruptured behind her left eye. She was immediately taken to surgery, where two coils were implanted in the aneurysm to stop the bleeding in her brain (subarachnoid hemorrhage). A second aneurysm, unruptured, remains along the same artery in her brain as the first, and will not be accessible for treatment until she heals from this hemorrhage.
Roughly 12-14 hours after this aneurysm burst, she was unresponsive due to hydrocephalus - too much fluid in brain - and had a ventriculostomy (surgery to create an opening in the skull so that an inserted tube can drain excess fluid from the brain).
These surgeries have saved her life. We feel extremely lucky that, not only was our mom already in a hospital when this happened, but Rex Hospital literally JUST this year hired neurological interventionalists to perform these exact surgeries. She is in the best hands imaginable.
As I am writing this, my mom has been in the ICU for 7 days. She could be there for another 1-2 weeks, depending on her progress. Neurologists have told us this is a journey - a long road to recovery. After she is discharged from the ICU, she will still need occupational therapy, and will be on disability until she is cleared to work again (maybe 3 months). Not to mention another surgery to prevent her other aneurysm from rupturing.
I don't know the cost of her medical bills yet. I will update as I receive that information. I just want to help. My mom is so incredibly loving, generous, and strong. The feeling of walking into her room at the ICU and talking to her, joking around with her, seeing her smile/laugh and roll her eyes sarcastically, and all that - it's unreal. Something we all took for granted until April 4.
If we, as her daughters, had the money to help with her bills, we would pour it all into her account. But we don't. We need your help to alleviate even a little stress from my mom as she recovers.
Please consider giving what you can. If you are not in a position to give, I ask that you at least spread the word. Thank you so much for all of your kindness this past week - we appreciate your words. Now we need to help our mom more directly.
- Jessi Branon
- Rachel Taube
- Michael White
- Sherry Irvin
Organizer and beneficiary
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