With modern technological advancements, a trip to a doctor’s office should mean getting an accurate diagnosis and an effective treatment plan. Of course, there are some problems more difficult to diagnose than others, but it’s not the 1800s anymore, and medical professionals should all have a thorough understanding of major health issues.
However, there have been cases where trust was put into doctors who led families astray. When Louise Gleadell from the United Kingdom sought advice from her doctor after giving birth, she was given a hasty and demeaning response about her crippling symptoms. Unfortunately, that was only the beginning of a terrifying fight for her life.
United Kingdom native Louise Gleadell was a dedicated wife, mother of two, and someone who found joy in everything she did. As she prepared to give birth to the newest little Geadell, she and her husband Matt could hardly contain their excitement.
Louise, Matt, and their two young boys were all eagerly awaiting the arrival of her third child. However, this particular pregnancy wasn’t like her first two at all.
At only 36 weeks in, Louise was experiencing terrible pains in her pelvis. They were so bad she was often incapacitated for hours at a time. But, she chalked it up to the fact she hadn’t given birth in 10 years. Unfortunately, she would soon realize that wasn’t the cause.
The pains would come and go, but Louise dealt with them. A few weeks before she was due, friends and family gathered to throw her a baby shower. The big day was almost upon them, and excitement was at an all-time high.
Finally, after nine months of waiting, the day arrived. Her family was by her side, ready to support the mother and wife however they could. Anxiety was running high, but when the big moment finally came, everything went off without a hitch.
Louise and Matt welcomed baby Jude into the world. He was healthy, his older brothers were excited to have a younger brother to help raise, and Louise and Matt were elated. Louise forgot all about the unusual pelvic pains she felt…until six months later.
Half a year after the birth of Jude, the pain in Louise’s pelvis returned. Not only that, but she developed a constant feeling of wooziness that wouldn’t go away. She knew something was seriously wrong.
The dizziness would get so bad sometimes she would need to sit in a wheelchair to avoid collapsing. She tried to convince herself it was just severe post-partum symptoms, but in her gut, she felt the root cause was far worse. So, she went to a doctor for a professional opinion.
When Louise told the doctor about her pelvic pains and the non-stop dizziness, he told her it was almost certainly because she was breastfeeding late into the night, which was causing a lack of sleep. Louise, however, wasn’t buying it.
Eventually, the doctor took blood tests at Louise’s request. She was confident the tests would show some kind of irregularity in them. There was no way someone who felt the way she did had absolutely nothing wrong with them.
When she called the office for the results, she was told her calcium levels were a bit low, but other than that, everything was perfectly fine. Louise didn’t believe it and demanded a copy of the results to look at herself.
Even though she wasn’t a doctor, she deciphered what was happening, and she was terrified at what the results showed. Levels indicating whether a serious infection was prevalent or not were four times higher than the norm. Louise needed to figure out what was wrong, and quick.
Louise was appalled her doctor kept telling her the whole issue was because of late-night breastfeeding. She knew it was more than that, and the tests proved it. She immediately found a private doctor for a thorough body scan, and the results were devastating.
In February of 2016, Louise was told she had stage 2B cervical cancer, and the pain and dizziness she was experiencing were symptoms. Lousie and Matt were crushed, but they knew they had to stay strong for their kids.
Louise said of her kids, “Joe and Mateo are coping amazingly but my family is very close and supportive and they are just fantastic boys. Jude is too young to understand what is going on but continues to thrive”
Louise refused to let the news deplete her of the will to survive. She had a supportive group of friends, and she made sure to stay positive about everything. People beat cancer all the time, and she was not going to let her diagnosis get the best of her.
She started chemotherapy treatments pretty much immediately after the diagnosis. For months, her body was reacting positively, but in October of that same year, she was given the worst news possible.
Louise’s cancer was incurable. It spread from her cervix to her neck, and there was nothing doctors could do except alleviate the pain as much as possible. Refusing to give up, she found a clinic in Germany she believed had the answer to her family’s prayers.
The clinic was called Hallwang, and the doctors there treated patients with experimental procedures. Louise was filled with hope, as she thought thinking outside the box was maybe the key to finding a cure.
The treatment was incredibly pricey, but when people learned of her situation, donations poured in from friends, family, and even good-willed strangers. She eventually had the €28,000 (about $31,500) to undergo the help.
Louise fought as hard as possible in Hallwang, but heartbreakingly, after a two-year battle, she passed away. She was surrounded by family who will never forget how strong she remained even during her darkest days.
When family members fall severely ill, everyone needs to band with them for support, as another family from Oklahoma had to do when the mother fell ill. The Finley family loved to have leisurely weekends during the summer. Husband Ryan would sit on the porch and enjoy a coffee in the morning while his wife, Jill, slept in and relaxed.
But one Sunday morning in 2007, Ryan wanted to wake Jill up a little earlier than usual so they could enjoy the beautiful summer morning together. But when he entered the room, Ryan made a discovery that stopped him dead in his tracks: his wife wasn’t breathing!
In a panic, he called 911. Soon, medics arrived and used a defibrillator on Jill for several minutes while Ryan watched in horror. Unable to get a heartbeat, the medics prepped Jill for transport.
Even while moving Jill out of the house on a stretcher, a medic was applying chest compressions the entire time. They knew without constant care, it was unlikely they’d be able to bring Jill back.
Jill was taken to the Oklahoma Heart Hospital, where doctors rushed her into the emergency room and put her on a respirator. She was getting the oxygen that she needed, but she was far from out of harm’s way.
You see, the doctors determined Jill had a heart attack while sleeping and her brain was deprived of oxygen for almost five whole minutes. She was wrapped in a cooling pad to prevent further brain damage but still didn’t wake. Worse yet, she was showing little brain activity.
Soon, Jill officially fell into a coma. Ryan spent as much time as he could by his wife’s side. He read Bible verses daily and even wrote down his thoughts to her in the form of letters, which he kept in a notebook. Even though hope was grim, he refused to give it up.
Was there any hope? Doctors offered little relief when they spoke to Ryan. They told him there was only about a one percent chance Jill would make any kind of recovery. Worse yet, it had already been two weeks and Jill wasn’t showing any signs of progress.
After 14 days with an unresponsive Jill, Ryan knew that he had to start making some tough calls. He contacted his wife’s parents to help decide what steps should be taken next. Ryan feared the only thing to do was take Jill off life support.
Ryan and Jill didn’t have an official plan in place if one of them was on life support, but an incident with Ryan’s aunt a few years earlier gave him an indication what her wishes might have been.
See, when Ryan’s aunt was placed on life support, Jill told her husband she would never want to be kept alive in a vegetative state. So, after consulting with Jill’s parents, Ryan chose to take his wife off life support and end her suffering.
The doctors explained that Jill would still remain alive for a short while after, and during that time frame, family and friends could say their goodbyes. Ryan, absolutely distraught, waited by his wife’s side for the end to come.
Ryan took a short video on his cell phone (actual footage below) of her so he would always remember their final moments, and then he went into the lobby to wait. However, not long after, nurses urged him to return to the room…
Miraculously, Jill’s body started shifting in her hospital bed! After a few minutes, she even began to mumble some words. The doctors, nurses, and Ryan were stunned. Then, Jill opened her eyes for the first time in weeks.
She opened her mouth and said, “Get me out of here.” Within minutes she began speaking coherently and answering all of her husband’s questions. A miracle had occurred; Jill awoke hours after being removed from life support. No one could explain what happened.
It took a few days for Jill to feel significantly better, but once she did, doctors explained to her and Ryan what put her in the coma. Unbeknownst to Jill, she had a congenital condition that caused her heart to stop pumping.
Shockingly, within just a few days, Jill was back at home. However, it took months for her to relearn many basic tasks such as teeth brushing and shoe tying. She also had a pacemaker put in and worked with occupational and speech therapists.
Jill didn’t blame Ryan at all for the decision he made to remove her breathing tube. There was no way of knowing if she would have made a full recovery, and although extremely difficult, it was the right decision.
After Jill made a full recovery, the couple became even closer. They developed a renewed love and appreciation for life and family. She thanked her lucky stars for a husband like Ryan.