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Bert D

Survivor

In Oct 2017 I went to work and had bad coal mining accident. I was burnt to 54% of my body, 1st degree on my face, 3rd degree on my left arm legs and back. And 4th degree on my right arm It was so bad they used plastic skin to repair it. (Sepsis and Burns) I was in ICU for about a month in a induced coma. There were 9 tubes inserted in my neck to feed me and drugs.

When in ICU I had 9 skin graft operations. In one of those operations my heart stopped but they managed to restart it again. The doctor said to me later, “if you going to have a heart attack, the operation table is the best place to have it.” (So always remember that readers ok) About a week after I had woken from my coma, I was lying in bed and this guy who was taking my blood came in. The doctor asked him how the last blood test went. I always remember this He said the blood is septic.

At that time I did not even know what sepsis was. But reading about it later it is very serious and it kills a lot patients suffering from burns. I was treated for it and they manage to control it I am a very lucky guy to be alive

Anyway after about 6 months of rehab they let me out of hospital to stay at a unit, provided me with nurse and I had to go to rehab every day. Lots of people don’t understand about burns I found out later. After you get skin grafts, they teach you how to use your body parts again because they mainly take the skin from other parts of your body and it needs to be stretched.

The first thing they teach you is how to use your fingers and hands. I have learned using your fingers and hands is the most important part to try and get moving again. Anyway rehab was intense, from using my hands and fingers and learning how to walk again. But for the rest of my life i have to make sure my skin stays stretched and not let it contract.

After I was allowed to go home about a year after the accident, I suffered the side affects of the accident like PTSD, alcoholism, I just kept saying to myself why me, why me. (Sepsis and Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder)

I had to wear a pressure shirt for the next year. I think the hardest part of all is that I lost my job, my marriage fell apart, and feeling the hurt and loneliness. I was compensated for the accident because I was a victim of circumstances. Anyway one day I would like to try and be an ambassador for burns and deal with people and talk about what they are going through and what they can expect might happen, but after the accident they really need a lot of support. And quiet frankly not many deal people with burns people. Burns are something that is not talked about much and it needs more attention I have since moved away from Australia to Thailand because the pressure of living was getting too much. Thailand has much more relaxed way of living One day I will go home again

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