Bus injury victim's incredible recovery amazes Royal Hospital for Neuro-disability experts
A woman who suffered life-threatening brain injuries after being hit by a bus has amazed medical experts by making a remarkable recovery.
Jaxx Cave, 41, was unable to walk, feed herself, wash herself or communicate when she arrived at Putney's Royal Hospital for Neuro-disability (RHN) in September 2010.
The former drug and alcohol commissioner for young people had been turned away by a number of rehabilitation units because of the complex nature and severity of her injuries after the incident which happened at a bus stop in Croydon in May 2010.
Miss Cave was initially airlifted for brain surgery at the Royal London Hospital and then taken to the University Hospital in Lewisham before being transferred to the RHN.
But thanks to intensive rehabilitation, hard work by Miss Cave herself and support from her family, she regained good movement and speech and learned to walk again.
Once she had regained her mobility, she and the team at the RHN focused her rehabilition on re-learning the skills necessary for independent living and re-integration into the community.
Ms Cave said: "My first memory after the accident was being taken to the Royal Hospital for Neuro-disability.
"I wasn’t interested in rehabilitation initially, as I thought there was no hope, but when the nurses came to measure me for a wheelchair, something twigged and I was determined to get better. It wasn’t easy.
"There were so many days I wanted to hide away and stay in bed, but the staff were fantastic and encouraged me every step of the way.
"I know I am not the same person I was before the accident - I will never have the career I had before, probably won’t become a mother, I forget things and may never become fully independent.
"But my rehabilitation team have helped me feel I can contribute to society and perhaps now help others who find themselves on the same long road to recovery."
In a step which really highlighted her miraculous recovery, earlier this year Miss Cave stood in front of 400 brain injury victims, support staff and medics at a recent rehabilitation conference.
Emma Gale, Rehabilitation Manager at RHN, said: "We’re so proud of Jaxx because she has approached her life after brain injury with such positivity.
"She now volunteers at the RHN, has raised money for us and is even helping others who are going through similar experiences."
Miss Cave still has problems with memory function, but has made a full physical recovery.
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