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Tiffany Manna

Survivor

I had always had kidney issues and stones from my early teens so at 25, I figured it was just going to be a painful couple of days passing another stone. (Sepsis and Kidney Stones) I went to the ER by my house after passing out in my boyfriend’s bathroom while puking (normal when you have stone pain) and they sent me home with some pain killers, and told me I should pass it in a few days and they knew it was a stone from an older CAT scan they had previously done.

The next day I felt sicker, had a fever and threw up a couple more times and was urinating blood. I went back to the ER and was sent home again, this time with an antibiotic and more pain meds. The following day I could barely move I had so much back pain from my kidney. I went to take a bath when my boyfriend walked in and found me unconscious on the bathroom floor. He called 911 and they rushed me to a different hospital. When I got there I begged for pain medication and couldn’t stop puking. They took my blood and came back in with full body suits on saying I was super sick and they needed to transfer me to a bigger hospital. I passed out twice in the ambulance on the way there and when I woke up again I was in ICU. I then coded twice in ICU (2 code blues) and all my organs began shutting down. My lungs began to fill with fluid and I told them I couldn’t breathe. My heart rate was 30bpm, my blood pressure was so low I should have been dead.

They gave me a couple blood transfusions, put a central line in my neck and I prayed to God I made it through the night. I had emergency surgery in the middle of the night to remove the stone because it was 8 mm and stuck but when they got in there my kidney was so infected they ended up just putting a ureteal stent in to bypass the stone and drain the kidney because I was too sick to do anything else. I had 8 stents swapped out over the following months. Finally they removed what they said was “enough golf ball sized stones to fill a big gulp cup.”

I spent so much time in that ICU bed that I had to undergo physical therapy when I got home because I couldn’t walk. I found out I was a month pregnant when I was in ICU too….. I’m now married to the boyfriend who saved my life and our daughter is turning 5 in a couple of months. She’s perfectly healthy despite what I went through while pregnant with her. I suffer from insomnia most nights now and anytime I get a fever I think I’m getting sepsis again. My right kidney is still enlarged to this day and doesn’t function properly but I’m alive. I survived and beat death. I coded twice and came back. The doctor who performed my surgeries hugged me, crying on the day I left the hospital. He said “not many people I’ve seen that sick, get up and leave here but stories like yours are why I’ve done this all these years.”

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