A woman has survived for 45 minutes without a pulse after complications from a caesarean section, it has been revealed.
Doctors and nurses at Boca Raton Regional Hospital are calling a mother’s recovery a miracle. On Sept. 23, Ruby Graupera-Cassimiro, 40, had her daughter, Taily, during a routine cesarean section, but there were complications.
“Suddenly, I got called overhead. They said, ‘Dr. Fleischer straight to the OR,’ and I rushed up, and as soon as I got there she was already intubated, and most of the team had already arrived assessing the situation,” obstetrician Dr. Michael Fleischer said.
Graupera-Cassimiro’s heart stopped for 45 minutes after amniotic fluid entered her bloodstream and heart and created a vacuum, stopping circulation.
“I was dead,” Graupera-Cassimiro told ABC News. “My husband tells me, ‘You were gray. You were cold as ice, and you were dead. You had no color in your lips.'”
Medical workers used shock paddles and chest compressions for three hours throughout the emergency to try and restore heart beat and circulation, Boca Raton Regional Hospital Spokesman Thomas Chakurda said.
The family was eventually called in to say their goodbyes. Chakurda says the doctors were preparing to pronounce her death when a blip on a monitor indicated a heartbeat.
“We were all holding hands and praying and one of the nurses came out of the OR and said, ‘Don’t stop praying, her heart has started to beat on its own,'” primary nurse Julie Ewing said.
The last thing Graupera-Cassimiro says she remembers is being wheeled into the recovery room after the C-section and asking someone for a tissue because her nose felt stuffy. She said it felt like she’d fallen asleep.
“I remember feeling a force telling me, ‘You’re not coming here. This is not your time, you know, you’re not supposed to be here, you’re going to wait a while, but you’re not staying here,'” Graupera-Cassimiro said. “I really didn’t know I died, by the way, I had no clue, that’s why when I woke up, to me no time had passed. I saw my whole family, but when I started seeing my family from Miami, I was like, ‘Oh something must have gone wrong, like why is she here, my aunts?’ I was like, ‘Wow this is weird. I talked to her. She said she wasn’t going to see me till Saturday,'” she said.
Chakurda says Graupera-Cassimiro’s survival is a story of two miracles – her resuscitation and the fact that she survived without serious brain damage despite going for so long without a pulse.
Graupera-Cassimiro said that the experience has taught her not to be afraid of death.
“I realize through all of this that one, we really don’t really have control of our lives,” she said. “The day you go is the day that you were destined to go.”