There are few things more earth-shattering or life-altering like a terminal diagnosis. These experiences have the capacity to change someone's perspective on life completely, as we learned once Redditor goblinhog asked the online community, "People who were told they were going to die soon by a professional, but lived, what happened?"
People shared some of their own experiences and those of those close to them.
My uncle had cancer, the doctor told him he had 6 months to live. He went to a second doctor who was like "Oh yeah we can treat that."
He beat the cancer and is still kicking.
"I was born with a faulty heart valve..."
I was born with a faulty heart valve and replacement wasn't an option. The surgeon didn't want to do the surgery to basically patch the valve but my parents strong armed him into it.
Doctors said I wouldn't survive, I did. then they said the patch would fail in 6 weeks, it didn't. Then for my whole childhood they insisted it was going to fail up until I was 16 and a whole panel of cardiologists basically said "well if it ain't broke, don't fix it". They said the valve would probably hold until my body started to break down in my 50-60s.
I'm 32 now and doing fine.
"What I'm assuming..."
So my grandmother was told she was gonna die and given something like a week's notice. Whole family was gathered round her as she did the usual closing eyes. Fading out, stopping breathing.
What I'm assuming to be one of her friends burst in shouting her name and shaking her, and she wakes up and is now living healthily at home.
Doctors had no idea what the hell just happened.
I was born with a genetic defect, called posterior urethral valves. It's a common defect that is usually found in standard ultrasound tests. When I was born (1982) it was not common practice to do an ultrasound during pregnancy, so it was never diagnosed.
The defect causes issues with your bladder draining properly, and the urine can back up into your kidneys, and cause renal failure. When I was 2 I was in renal failure and my parents didn't know it. I was very sick and started vomiting regularly, my parents called the pediatrician and he told them to give me an aspirin and put me to bed. My parents felt uneasy about that advice and decided to call their uncle who was a physician. He told them to take me to the emergency room ASAP. It turns out I was in end stage renal failure and one of my kidneys had completely shut done and the other one was severely damaged.
I was rushed to the children's hospital where they performed emergency surgery to remove the dead kidney and put me on emergency dialysis. The prognosis wasn't good and they doubted if my 1 damaged kidney was going to recover, and if it did how long it would be able to sustain me.
I survived, but all through my childhood I was carted to the hospital for blood tests, and catheters, and tests, I still hate hospitals to this day. There were still a lot of questions on if my kidney would be able to sustain me into adulthood and I believe my parents tested all my sibling to see if they would be a match for a transplant.
My kidney is close to twice the size of a normal kidney as it grew to compensate for the lack of an additional kidney. My ureter is all sorts of messed up due to the fluid pressure that resulted when my bladder wasn't emptying. This has led to a few complications such as an increased risk for kidney stones, etc..... but I am now 38 and alive and almost completely healthy. Recent blood work has showed my kidney is functioning at about 80% of normal. I may still need a transplant someday, but it's pretty amazing that one damaged kidney has gotten me this far.
Had a severe allergic reaction to a famous alcohol and energy drink combo. Was taken to A&E (UK version of ER) where the Doctors misdiagnosed it as an asthma attack and put me on a high dose ventolin nebuliser. I am also allergic to ventolin so that compounded the effect. My heart rate continued to climb and my sats continued to drop. From here the story is second-hand as I was delirious and then unconscious. Apparently they called my mum in to the hospital expressly to say goodbye. She is a retired nurse. Took one look at my chart and told the Consultant he was a f-ing idiot and started turning things off. Much shouting and excitement later security invited her to leave, but they did take me off the drugs and replaced them with something I wasn't allergic to. I woke up the next morning with the worst hangover of my life.
"I was told..."
I was told I had late stage lymphoma by an ER doctor. He told me I had 4-5 months to live. I had extreme pain in my lower back and upper legs with a lot of swelling in the legs. Over two months I had several tests including a biopsy that showed negative but still had a massive lump near my spine. Turns out wasn't lymphoma but a blood clot that quickly turned into almost half my body clotted due to me missing part of my vascular system. While in the ICU they gave me too many blood thinners and I almost bleed out, which is how my great grandma died. Good times.
"This is a story I've been told..."
This is a story I've been told about one hundred times because I was too young to remember. I've been told I had gotten very sick when I was about a year old and the doctor said it was the flu. My mother had finally gotten me to sleep and went to nap, and my father went off to work. My dad liked to pop in during the day and thankfully he did. He said he could smell something foul when he entered the house and followed the scent into my room where I was laying quite still but awake in my own bodily fluids.
Upon unbuttoning my sleeper he said that I was clammy, more pale than usual, and he could count my ribs. He rushed me to the hospital (without waking my mother) where they told my father that I was in critical condition and likely wouldn't last through the night. Twenty-seven years later, I'm still hearing about how horrible my mother was for not staying awake for another 24 hours.
"After recovering for some time..."
I had multi-system organ failure due to an infection and the surgeons recommended my out of state family come say goodbye if they could because I wasn't expected to last the weekend. After recovering for some time in the ICU a random doctor popped by my room and said "whoa, you're still here?! I thought you were a goner." Pretty sure his bedside manner was iffy but at least I was alive.
"Had no phone or anything..."
Had a bad head injury. It was not superficial so I didn't realize how bad at first. Went to the hospital found out I had cracked my skull and air got into my brain. After being told this, they said they are going to rush me to the trauma unit. I asked the doctor if I was going to be alright. He said I was probably going to die then walked out the room. Had no phone or anything at the time was sitting there alone just thinking about everything.. I'm all good now and have no negative side effects that I know of.
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