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Surviving internal decapitation

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    Surviving internal decapitation

    Pretty amazing story.

    07/12/2006 - 12:23:00 PM

    'Miracle' recovery of boy whose head was severed from neck

    The mother of a 12-year-old boy whose head was severed from his neck in a racing car crash has spoken of her son’s miraculous recovery.

    Chris Stewart suffered an internal decapitation, which kills or disables most people, when he hit a crash barrier at a track in Hampshire, England, on September 24.

    But just four weeks after the 40mph crash, Chris was allowed home from Southampton General Hospital for weekend visits.

    His parents Debra, 40, and John, a 42-year-old carpenter, said his survival and recovery is a miracle.

    “I was watching the race and I just felt physically sick,” said Mrs Stewart. I could see the impact, how fast he was going.

    “At first I wasn’t really sure about the extent of his injuries. He had been knocked out but came round and stayed awake while they cut him out of the car. I certainly never thought he had broken his neck.”
    Chris was 11 at the time and driving in a junior class on a grass track with the Tongham Motor Club. The impact of the crash separated his head from his neck internally.

    His tongue was also detached at the root which makes speaking and eating difficult for him.

    Firefighters spent 90 minutes cutting him out of the wrecked 1,000cc Mini before he was taken by ambulance to Southampton General Hospital.

    He underwent a six-hour, life-saving operation, known as a occipital-cervical fusion, which re-attached his head to his top vertebrae with metal plates and bone-grafts.

    Mrs Stewart, a financial advisor who also has 10-year-old son Patrick and eight-year-old daughter Sophie, said: “He is very lucky to be alive. It’s a miracle really. The surgeon told us we had no choice, he would die without the operation but that there was only a seven per cent chance he would survive it. Once they had done the operation they couldn’t guarantee what condition he would be in.”

    But the schoolboy did survive. He spent 19 days in intensive care and after four weeks wearing a neck collar he can now swim, walk, exercise and can’t wait to get behind the wheel again.

    “He has no chance. I can’t go through that again,” added Mrs Stewart.

    He celebrated his 12th birthday in hospital and his doctors have marvelled at his recovery from what have historically been non-survivable injuries.

    Chris attends intensive therapy at the hospital.

    Terry Sherwood, 40, committee member of the Tongham Motor Club, helped save Chris’ life and said he was wearing overalls, crash helmet, neck brace and harness when he crashed.

    He said: “That lad has made an absolutely miraculous recovery. He is just unbelievable.”
    Excellence is hard to keep quite - Sherrie Coale



      11 year olds allowed to race mini's at 40mph is also amazing
      "Some people don't know their easy lives... I wouldn't be so ungrateful" - Fiacre Ryan - #AutismAndMe


        Indeed it was a miracle. Internal decapitation is a severe injury, and according to the report, only few had survived from it. Recently, numerous agencies are reporting the story of an Arizona woman who also made it through internal decapitation. It's a grisly damage and also a very uncommon one, though it is largely limited to automobile accidents.


          Re: Surviving internal decapitation

          Wow, internet forum thread also survives internal decapitation after being in limbo for over 6 years!


            Indeed. Hyperlink removed from today's first post.
            Tis but a scratch.


              There´s a 2012 update here....

              He was as lame as a duck. Not the metaphorical lame duck either, but a real duck that was actually lame. Maybe from stepping on a land mine or something.