AFE Survivor, Janessa P

Mar 25, 2022 | AFE Stories, AFE Survivor


On September 1, 2021, I gave birth to my beautiful baby girl. I was dilated 8cm when the fetal heart rate began to decrease and our girl was in distress. I was scheduled for an emergency Caesarean section. Brooklyn was born lifeless with no pulse. She was taken away and CPR was initiated and continued for 17 minutes at which point her pulse returned. Brooklyn was intubated and hooked up to a ventilator that was helping her breathe, while she awaited transport to the NICU at Janeway Children’s Hospital.

Following Brooklyn’s delivery, I was brought to recovery and then transferred to the obstetrics unit. My blood pressure remained low and my heart rate remained high after her delivery. I began to deteriorate drastically. I was in and out of consciousness and was transferred to the ICU. I went into cardiac arrest and CPR was initiated for 4 minutes. I was intubated and placed on a ventilator just like my baby girl. I had extensive fluid resuscitation and a total of 18 units of blood. I had multiple IVs, a nasogastric tube, and a catheter. It was determined that I needed to be transferred to the Health Science Centre to continue extensive and emergent life-saving treatment that I was unable to receive at my home hospital. My baby girl and I were airlifted to St.John’s, NL. 

I arrived at the Health Science Centre unstable and in critical condition. A team of 7 doctors was waiting for me when I arrived.  I spent 3 days in the ICU and was then transferred to the obstetrics unit where I was released 9 days later. When Brooklyn arrived at the NICU, she was placed in a thermal jacket for 72 hours to decrease her body temperature. She spent 7 weeks in the NICU under the care of a neonatologist, cardiologist, and neurologist. Brooklyn had multiple MRIs of her brain, EEGs, echocardiograms, and ultrasounds during her stay at the NICU. She left the NICU with a feeding tube which she no longer requires and she is thriving!  

Recovery was very hard, both mentally and physically. Two months have passed and I am just getting back to myself and we are finally home as a family.

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