Mum wakes up after C-section to find both her legs amputated
I'm now sleeping downstairs in the living room and trying to get used to walking with prosthetic legs, but it's challenging.
After spending hour after gruelling hour giving birth to your child, the last thing a mother expects is to find that both of her legs had been amputated, but such was the scenario Ella Clarke from Devon, England found herself in.
She woke up with a new baby in her arms, but both her legs were missing.
Although it wasn’t her first time giving birth via C-section (only one of her seven children had been born vaginally), it was the first time she had been diagnosed with a condition called placenta previa—a condition that occurs when a baby’s placenta partially or totally covers the opening in the mother’s cervix.
After she was diagnosed with the condition, her doctors assured her the baby was fine, but it was time to have the C-section, said a Daily Mail report.
Once she was on the operating table, the doctors began to realise that her placenta had embedded itself deep into her uterine wall, resulting in a pregnancy complication called placenta accreta.
“Typically, the placenta detaches from the uterine wall after childbirth,” according to Mayo Clinic. “With placenta accreta, part or all of the placenta remains firmly attached. This can cause severe blood loss after delivery.”
The doctors successfully delivered her baby, but half an hour into the procedure, Ella began to lose too much blood due to the complication.
Doctors then performed an emergency hysterectomy and in the process gave her five blood transfusions. Ella was placed into an induced coma and transferred to intensive care.
For the next 24 hours, the doctors carefully monitored her for blood clots—a common side effect of her complication.
However, Ella claims that the doctors forgot to check on her for six hours, and when they finally did, clotting had already occurred in her legs and circulation had stopped, starving her lower limbs of blood supply.
It left doctors no choice but to amputate her legs.
“A shadow of her former self”
“I remember the moment I woke up. I thought I was waking up from my C-section,” she said in the Daily Mail report. “I expected my beautiful little baby girl to be passed to me. Instead I was told doctors had amputated my legs after complications with my C-section.”
Now Ella says she is a shadow of her former self; she went from being an active mother to being restricted to her wheelchair.
Her five-year-old couldn’t even look at her without a blanket draped on her lap because she’s scared, and her eldest daughter started falling behind on school.
“I’m now sleeping downstairs in the living room and trying to get used to walking with prosthetic legs, but it’s challenging,” she said. “I’m having counselling to cope with the shock but my whole life has changed forever.”