Mum-of-three recovers from induced coma in time for Mother’s Day

Hayley Trotman on the slow road to recovery. 

Hayley Trotman on the slow road to recovery. - Credit: Askham

A 44-year-old mum-of-three has made a remarkable recovery from an eight-day induced coma just in time to spend Mother’s Day at home.  

Hayley Trotman was admitted to Askham Reham, a specialist neuro rehab community near Doddington, from an acute trust last November. 

She had spent three months in an intensive care unit (ICU) where she had stopped breathing twice and had to be mechanically ventilated with a tracheostomy. 

Hayley, who works in a school and lives in Orton Brimbles, near Peterborough, had suffered from Guillain-Barré syndrome (GBS), a very rare and life-threatening condition that affects the nerves. 

Askham Rehab could tap into Hayley’s hobby of being out in the garden, which helped lift her mood and fully engaged her in...

Askham Rehab could tap into Hayley’s hobby of being out in the garden, which helped lift her mood and fully engaged her in the rehab process. - Credit: Askham Rehab

The condition often happens after an infection, and in Hayley’s case, it is believed to have been caused by a common cold she had last August. 


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The mother of three young children had an extreme condition of the syndrome where she was left in excruciating pain and unable to move any part of her body, except a couple of fingers.  

Sara Neaves, clinical lead and outpatients service manager at Askham Rehab, said: “When Hayley first came to Askham, there were a lot of issues around her pain.  

Hayley used the open space at Askham Rehab to build back her confidence through independently walking and making use of...

Hayley used the open space at Askham Rehab to build back her confidence through independently walking and making use of the abundant gardens and grounds. - Credit: Askham Rehab

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“Just pulling back her bedsheets caused extreme pain, and this required a lot of input from our medical and clinical psychology teams to help stabilise.  

“I remember Hayley saying to me, ‘I’m so scared I will never be able to walk again’. I promised her she would, but we knew it was going to be a long road to recovery.” 

Once her pain had stabilised, Hayley was able to make use of Askham Rehab’s new robotics and sensor assisted technology.  

Using a multifunctional chair, Hayley was able to challenge her lower limbs in strength, movement, accuracy, and coordination.  

Hayley was given a departure date of March 11, allowing her to fulfil her ultimate goal of arriving home to her children...

Hayley was given a departure date of March 11, allowing her to fulfil her ultimate goal of arriving home to her children and husband in time for Mother’s Day. - Credit: Askham Rehab

Empowered with the state-of-the-art equipment, along with sessions in the hydrotherapy pool and sensory rooms and gardens, therapists were able to improve Hayley’s condition drastically in just a matter of weeks, to the point where she was able to walk again with assistance. 

Hayley was soon able to live independently in a self-contained, fully adapted onsite apartment.  

Hayley said: “I was terrified when I came out of ICU but upon my arrival to Askham, I was reassured that everything was going to be OK and that I would return home to my family.  

“My most memorable milestone was when I first used the rollator to walk.

"I thought I was going to hit the deck, but the team at Askham encouraged me to do it and I ended up walking down the corridor – it was fantastic.

"They even videoed the moment and sent it to my husband and children. 

“During my stay, I started a journal so I could reflect on my journey and note my progress. Each day, I wrote down advice from the team and used it as motivation.  

After making significant progress in her treatment, Hayley was soon able to live independently in a self-contained, fully...

After making significant progress in her treatment, Hayley was soon able to live independently in a self-contained, fully adapted onsite apartment. - Credit: Askham Rehab

“Their words helped me move forward and have stayed with me to this day. I’ve been supported in every step of my journey and will be forever grateful for everything the team at Askham did for me.  

“I’ve got so many things on my bucket list now. One of the first things I want to do is jump out of a plane to raise funds for GBS.” 

Aliyyah-Begum Nasser, director at Askham, said: “We’re a family business with more than 30 years’ experience, including 10 years of neurological rehabilitation expertise. 

“We’re able to offer the facilities to accommodate and treat people with a wide range of extensive neurological conditions.  

“Our community prides itself on having programmes in place to ensure those staying with us will receive structured, high-quality care with a holistic approach.” 

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