A fundraiser has been launched to help the household of an Edinburgh dad who has been left with life-changing harm to his physique after surviving a staggering 172 days in intensive care with coronavirus.
Brian Mearns is considered the longest ICU admission for Coivd-19 in Scotland to this point after first contracting the virus almost a yr in the past, in March.
Whereas the beforehand “match and wholesome” 63-year-old is now again at house together with his household, his physique has been irreversibly broken by the virus and has been left needing oxygen and wheelchair help.
Leah Mearns, 38, has recalled when her dad first took sick with coronavirus within the early days of the pandemic.
Talking to Edinburgh Dwell , she stated: “He was first admitted to hospital on the 28 March however he’d been sick for round two weeks earlier than that, with what was initially handled as urine an infection as a result of he didn’t have any of the usual signs.
“It was primarily ache in his again, the coughing and issues didn’t begin till in a while. Over the 2 weeks earlier than he was admitted he simply went downhill. He was sleeping and couldn’t get up, he wouldn’t eat and he had illness and diarrhea. My mum was additionally sick on the similar time as a result of she had it [Covid].
“I phoned NHS 24 and was advised he mainly needed to get himself there [to hospital] as a result of it might be too lengthy to attend for an ambulance and so they didn’t need anybody else driving him in, as a result of at that time he hadn’t be recognized with Covid, in case we caught it.
“He took himself in by the 29 March his respiration had deteriorated that a lot that he was moved to intensive care and ventilated.”
The household later discovered that the dad-of-two was so sick he had been compelled to desert his automobile in an ambulance bay after reaching the Western Normal Hospital.
Leah continued: “Initially, he was solely in ICU for just a few days the primary time as a result of his respiration picked up once more.
“However inside 24 hours his respiration had deteriorated once more and was moved just about straight again into intensive care and ventilated and the second time he was in ICU he was there for 172 days.”
Brian’s household, his spouse of over 40 years Gillian and two daughters Nikki and Leah, had been referred to as to say their ultimate goodbyes 3 times throughout his time in intensive care however, miraculously, he survived.
Medics lined the hallways and cheered when Brian was wheeled out of the ICU and brought to a respiratory ward the place he remained for round 4 weeks earlier than being taken to a rehab facility in Edinburgh. He was lastly reunited at house together with his household simply days earlier than Christmas.
Virtually a yr on from when her dad was first admitted to hospital, Leah has described their ordeal as a “nightmare”.
She stated: “It’s been all of our worst nightmares. We have gone from having a bodily match and wholesome man who was very energetic, to seeing him mendacity in a mattress and reliant on machines to maintain him respiration.
“It was horrible however we obtained a miracle and he’s nonetheless together with his”, she added.
Earlier than contracting Covid, Brian labored as a printer and was nearing retirement however has been left unable to work after the virus ravished his physique.
A household buddy has now launched a JustGiving page here to lift £4,000 to assist the household to purchase gear for him, together with an electrical wheelchair and adjustable mattress.
Leah stated: “We don’t suppose he’ll ever get again to how he was earlier than.
“He’s obtained a number of harm to his lungs, so is reliant on oxygen. He’s okay sitting or in mattress however as quickly as he goes to maneuver or do something, he wants oxygen.
“If he’s climbing up the steps he wants oxygen and has to cease midway as much as get his breath again and he suffers fatigue and has ache in every single place.
“He can stroll about the home with a strolling stick and his oxygen but when he’s out he wants a wheelchair and has a number of hospital appointments.
“It is advisable keep watch over him due to the harm, he’s suffered fibrosis of the lungs and kidney harm and muscle failure and loss.
“It is going to be life-changing after-effects”, she added.
“An adjustable mattress is without doubt one of the issues we expect will actually profit him as a result of he can’t lie flat. The NHS has given us a mattress raiser however he’s six-foot and when that goes up he slides out the underside of the mattress.
“Additionally, to provide him extra independence, he wants an electrical wheelchair. His wheelchair that he’s obtained in the mean time, my mum would wrestle to push him in.”
Over £300 has already been raised to assist the household return to “some type of ‘normality'” – you can donate here.