It only takes a moment to change a life. It only takes a moment to make sure your seat belt is properly engaged. It only takes a moment to call a cab.
Last Monday night, President’s Day, around 6pm my parents were hurt in an automobile accident. They were hit on the rear of the driver’s side by a drunk driver speeding off the freeway (880) at the Lewelling exit. She was waiting at the median strip, near the exit to finish crossing Lewelling. From what can be determined she was thrown out of the driver’s side window and landed 15 feet away on the pavement. Whether she had her seat belt on cannot be determined. My dad (who suffers from Alzheimer’s) had his on, because she belted it for him, he won’t buckle it himself.
She has C1 spine fracture and broken ribs, multiple cuts on her head and bruises allover her body. Thank God she is not paralyzed and does not need surgery. She will not have to wear the Halo brace, but will wear another type of neck brace (less invasive than the halo) for 3-months.
The main concern through Friday, and why she is in ICU is her broken ribs which are preventing her from breathing deeply enough, and the resulting possibility of pneumonia. There was fluid in the left lung. This fluid makes it difficult for the lungs to give oxygen to the blood. On Friday she had a thoracentesis. Thoracentesis is a procedure to remove fluid from the space between the lungs and the chest wall called the pleural space. It is done with a needle (and sometimes a plastic catheter) inserted through the chest wall. They removed 300cc of fluid from the lung. Since then her recovery has improved. The swelling is going down and she is doing much better with her breathing. She is able to eat and drink and she can talk, but just wants to rest and watch a little TV. Each day she gets a little stronger, but at 80 years old it will be a long healing process.
My dad was not hurt and came home after a brief stay.