Wow. I’m so glad that Kate not only made a full recovery, but can now advocate for others who face the same nightmare.
She had spent ten days in a coma after suffering a massive stroke at the age of 39.
So when Kate Allatt came around in a hospital bed it should have been a huge relief to her family – and herself.
However, regaining consciousness was just the start of her nightmare. She soon realised that although her mind was functioning perfectly, everyone around her thought she was brain dead.
She lay paralysed, robbed of speech and unable to breathe on her own, listening in horror as medics and relatives discussed her prognosis and terrified that they would decide to turn off life support.
Ms Allatt, a 39-year-old mother-of-three was suffering from Locked-In Syndrome, which left her unable to communicate and a prisoner in her own body for two weeks. .
‘Locked-In Syndrome is like being buried alive,’ Ms Allatt, from South Yorkshire, in England, told Daily Mail Australia.
‘You can think, you can feel, you can hear, but you can communicate absolutely nothing.’
Four years later and Ms Allatt is now an author (three times over) who is raising awareness about the importance of understanding strokes and treating patients with respect and dignity.
‘You must assume everyone is conscious until you’ve proved otherwise, not the other way around,’ urges Ms Allatt.
It took two weeks for Ms Allatt to successfully communicate to friends that she was mentally alert.
‘They thought I was in a vegetative state. I couldn’t move a muscle. There was no signal I was in there,’ Ms Allet said.
‘I was on life support and they might have turned it off,’ Ms Allatt continues.
‘I couldn’t breathe for myself but I could hear conversations that I didn’t want to hear.’
Ms Allatt has made a miraculous recovery due to her relentless work and her sheer will to gain control of her body again.
She describes to Daily Mail Australia the terror and distress she felt as she lay for two weeks, surrounded by loved ones but be unable to tell them that she was still ‘there’.
‘It was so scary, I can’t tell you. The fear, the anxiety, the terror.
Ms Allatt was also suffering from serious hallucinations due to the opium-based medication.
She had no warning or explanation about these side-effects, as the doctors and nurses were unaware the 39-year-old was lucid and well aware of what was happening to her.
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