A St Helens woman has made a miraculous recovery following a horror car crash in which she nearly lost her life.
Jayne Hilton was described as being in a critical condition by the emergency services after her Mazda collided with a lorry on the St Helens Linkway on March 27 last year.
The 38-year-old, of Beech Avenue, Clock Face, had sustained a severe brain injury and spent more than a fortnight in a coma.
Perhaps unsurprisingly, she is still feeling the effects of the crash now – she’s visually impaired and suffers weakness to her right side – but she has made staggering progress in her rehabilitation to date.
Jayne, who has no recollection of the crash, in which her car collided with a lorry and spun into the central reservation, said: “I was just driving to work when the accident happened. I’d taken a shortcut along a slip road but crashed into the lorry when I pulled out onto the Linkway.
“I was in a coma for two-and-a-half weeks and spent three months in The Walton Neuro Centre before spending another three months at Mossley Hill Hospital under Mersey Care.
“My condition has improved no end since the accident – I’ve even started returning to work – but I’m hoping there’s still more improvement to come.
“I realise how lucky I was to get the specialist care I received because there are not a lot of places like the brain injury rehabilitation centre, which help you start re-building your life.”
Jayne, who also suffers from memory loss, is now on a phased return to work at Aintree Hospital’s pathology laboratories and spoke publicly about the impact the accident has had on her life at a recent brain injury awareness event.
Since her ordeal, she has a new addition to her life – Bertie, a Poodle-cross her mum promised she would buy her if she woke up.
She also joined her husband Ian on the fundraising 10km Grasmere Gallop trek in the Lake District earlier this month to raise funds for Mersey Care’s brain injury rehabilitation unit – the only one of its kind in the country to be accredited by brain injury charity Headway. Together, they raised more than £1,500 for both the unit and Headway.
She said: “It took us about two hours and six minutes to complete the course. But at least we weren’t the last to finish! We got absolutely soaked but, thankfully, managed to miss all the thunder and lightning storms.
“Luckily, all the uphill bits were at the start. I did have one stop of about five minutes for a rest and drink but it was a Nordic walk and my walking poles helped me to balance.”