Suffering a brain haemorrhage at the wheel is an unthinkable nightmare in any situation, but for Pat, this happened on a busy afternoon whilst driving home from work along the M4.
Veering off the motorway and down the embankment, wiping out six fence panels on the way, Pat’s car finally came to a halt, however the trauma had caused a further fracture to the brain and Pat was in need of urgent critical care.
Luckily, someone had reported Pat’s car running off the motorway, and several people were sent to attend to her. When the ambulance service arrived, Pat was conscious but rambling and repeating herself, a sign of a serious head injury, and so Great Western Air Ambulance Charity were called. One in three people who suffer a brain haemorrhage do not even make it to hospital, so time was of the essence and Pat needed medical attention, fast.
Our crew arrived on scene, administering life-saving drugs and critical treatment to Pat before deciding to take her the major trauma unit, which at the time was at Frenchay– the hospital best suited for Pat’s condition.
Later that evening, Pat’s family received the phone call that everyone dreads. They were told to make their way to the hospital, where it would be touch and go for the next 48 hours as to whether Pat would survive.
After being fitted with a titanium coil to stop the bleed on her brain, Pat’s condition was monitored closely and she was on a lot of medication. It wasn’t until the twelfth day in hospital that Pat realised the full extent of what had happened to her that day, and she still has no recollection of the time in between. After 17 days in hospital, Pat was allowed to return home and be with her family.
During her recovery, Pat was able to visit the air base the following year to meet the crew who attended to her on the day.
Pat explained: “I had convinced myself that it would all come flooding back to me but sadly I didn’t remember anything. Without Great Western Air Ambulance Charity, I wouldn’t be here today.”
“I owe my life to them and I, and my family and friends, will be eternally grateful. When I’m fully recovered, we will be trying to organise something to help raise money for them to help them save other people’s lives as they have mine.”