Kate Garraway has revealed Derek Draper has said his first word since the start of his seven-month coronavirus battle.
Derek has been in hospital since contracting the virus back in March and has so far spent 214 days in hospital.
Kate revealed that she watched via FaceTime as doctors manipulated Derek’s body to stop it from seizing up.
She sobbed as he mouthed the word “pain”.
What did Kate Garraway say about Derek Draper’s ‘breakthrough’?
As a result, he is now breathing without the use of a ventilator.
Kate said she is now trying to balance “belief, hope, optimism with reality”.
Opening up about his battle, Kate revealed doctors had a “breakthrough”.
However, it was tinged with sadness.
“We have had a breakthrough which was both amazing yet heartbreaking. It happened when the nurses were moving Derek, as part of his treatment, to trigger the sensation of gravity because he’s been horizontal for so long,” she said.
As they were shifting him, they asked if he could feel anything. Not expecting a response as he hadn’t previously. But suddenly he mouthed in a whisper: ‘Pain.’
Kate explained that right from the start of his hospitalisation, doctors have been speaking to Derek to try and “trigger a response”.
She said: “As they were shifting him, they asked if he could feel anything. Not expecting a response as he hadn’t previously. But suddenly he mouthed in a whisper: ‘Pain.’
“Obviously it’s so heart-wrenching that his first word was pain, but it is a huge breakthrough because it means he has been able to connect the feeling in his body to his brain and mouth.”
The staff were emotional too
Kate revealed doctors called her straight afterwards and she “burst into tears”.
She said the staff later told her that they were emotional too.
Kate added that it’s heartbreaking that there may have been times when Derek has been in “terrible pain” and hasn’t been able to articulate it to doctors.
She said Derek has said the word twice now, with Kate present on FaceTime the second time her husband spoke.
Derek is now in a form of coma called a PDOC – or a prolonged disorder of consciousness.
Kate explained that it means there is a “flash of his presence” and then he “disappears” again.
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