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Rachel’s Fight for Life

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My wife Rachel is 35 years old, we live in Worcestershire with our 14-year-old daughter. Rachel was fit, healthy and independent, we were enjoying a “normal family life.” Devastatingly, all that changed in 2018 when Rachel suffered a head injury and her health spiralled out of control.

In January 2020, Rachel underwent an Occipital Spinal Fusion surgery in the UK. Her skull was fixed to her spine with rods and screws, and a piece of bone from her skull and spine was removed to create more room for her brain. The surgeon assured us this procedure would relieve compression from her brainstem. Sadly this has not been the case, and we eventually learnt that Rachel’s surgery had failed. Rachel has severe Brainstem compression due to Basilar Invagination, a life-threatening condition. Her skull and brain have slipped down onto her spine which has resulted in one of her bones from her spine to protrude into her Brainstem. The Brainstem plays a critical role in regulating involuntary functions, including her breathing, heart rate, blood pressure, temperature, and several other crucial functions that help keep her ALIVE. 

After further investigations many complex tests show a rapid deterioration of her brainstem function, which can shut down completely at any time, leading to brainstem death. Rachel needs to undergo a combination of very complex brain and spinal surgeries in order to SAVE HER LIFE! We have consulted many specialists worldwide as Rachel’s case is extremely complex and have found help with Dr Gilete a neurosurgeon in Barcelona who has re-evaluated her case and worked extremely hard to manage to put a team together who can perform the surgeries that are so desperately needed. Surgery has been scheduled for the 20th May. 

This is where we desperately need your help. We need to raise £215,000 to cover the surgeries, pre and post surgery nursing care and testing, plus ambulance costs to Barcelona as it now cannot be determined if it would be safe for Rachel to fly. 

Sadly time is crucial now as Rachel is in respiratory failure and every day I am witnessing her deterioration. The quicker we can raise the funds the more hope we have of her making a full recovery. Rachel is now unable to leave the house unaided and has no quality of life.

Rachel has always been the strongest, bravest and most selfless person I know. I wake up every morning terrified that she may have not made it through the night. Watching my wife suffer and dying before my eyes is soul destroying. Our daughter constantly worries that she may come home from school one day to find out she’s lost her Mum for good. All Rachel wants is to stop living in fear of dying and leaving her family behind. Rachel’s hopes and dreams are like all mums, she wants to watch our daughter grow up and one day be a proud mum at her wedding. I desperately need my wife and our daughter needs her Mum. The thought of our life without her is unbearable.

Any donation however great or small COUNTS and without your generosity and support we couldn’t do it alone. You can also help by sharing Rachels Go fund me page with all of your contacts, following and sharing Rachel’s Fight For Life on Facebook, where you can also follow Rachel’s journey. 

Love Guy xx


  • Anonymous
    • £10 
    • 2 yrs
  • Jameela Zaman
    • £10 
    • 2 yrs
  • Diane Willetts
    • £10 
    • 2 yrs
  • Paul Rewston
    • £5 
    • 2 yrs
  • robert westwood
    • £10 
    • 2 yrs

Fundraising team: Team Rachel (2)

Rachel Pighills
Alex Forrest
Team member

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