Hadassah

From Life-Threatening Brain Bleed to Birth of a Daughter

Thursday, Dec 11 2014

Yoni and Gila Sibony with their new baby.

When Gila Sibony was six months pregnant, she suffered a life-threatening bleed in her brain. The Hadassah Medical Organization’s specialists saved her life, but she lost the baby. 

Fast forward about five years and Gila is the mother of a new baby girl, born at Hadassah.

"We owe my wife's life and our baby's life to the amazing staff in Hadassah’s two hospitals and all the supporters around the world who have made such advanced medicine possible,” relates Gila’s husband, Yoni.

Gila recalls how everything was going along smoothly with her first pregnancy until, suddenly, she experienced a severe headache and collapsed on her bed. She managed to roll herself over to the phone to call for help.

Senior Hadassah Neurologist Dr. Guy Rosenthal remembers receiving a phone call at 2:00 am, alerting him to Gila’s arrival in the emergency room. "When I saw her,” he says, “she had already slipped into a coma. One pupil was dilated and that's usually a negative sign. It can mean there is pressure not only on the brain, but also on the brain stem, and often a patient is on the verge of death."

A Cat scan revealed a large hematoma, a bleed within the brain. “It was about the size of a small child's fist,” Dr. Rosenthal recalls. “We had to take it out."

During surgery, Dr. Rosenthal and his team removed the top of Gila's skull to relieve the swelling and remove the huge blood clot. It had been caused by a brain arteriovenous malformation (AVM), which is characterized by an abnormal connection between the arteries and veins. The problem is congenital, but before this, Gila had not experienced any symptoms. Her pregnancy, however, put pressure on her system and caused the rupture.

Slowly, the swelling went down. Several weeks later, Gila began to wake up. "Recovery is a very slow process, but we were hopeful," Dr. Rosenthal says.

Eventually, Gila was well enough to begin a comprehensive rehabilitation program at Hadassah Hospital Mount Scopus. "We gathered a multidisciplinary team of doctors, nurses, speech therapists, occupational therapists, physical therapists, psychologists, and dieticians to help her," reports Dr. Isabella Schwartz, head of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation.

Like a dangerous roadway, the affected part of her brain needed to be closed off. Neurosurgeon Prof. Jose Cohen inserted soft platinum coils, shaped like springs the size of a human hair, and neutralized the problem.

"My first dream was to sit up and have coffee with my husband," relates Gila. "I got there, and then I dreamt of walking. We kept raising the ante on my dreams."

Gila’s biggest dream was to become a mother. As Dr. Rosenthal explains, this presented a new risk for her. But, he says, “we consulted with the obstetric gynecological team and decided she could do it, particularly if she avoided the strain of childbirth by having a Cesarean birth."

Every stage was monitored at Hadassah. About a month ago, Gila gave birth to her daughter and she and Yoni named the baby Oreen, signifying light and joy.

Comments

No comments yet.
First Name
Email
Comment
Enter this word:

Related Stories

alt_text

Wednesday, Mar 22 2017

Marathon Runner Pays Tribute to Hadassah Medical Team

After successfully running in the 2017 Jerusalem Marathon, Gil Troy pays tribute to Prof. Meir Liebergall, Director of the Hadassah Medical Organization’s Orthopedic Surgery Department, and his medical team, who made this run possible.

READ MORE ›
alt_text

Wednesday, Mar 22 2017

Reversing the Odds with Technology and Expertise

It could be a young patient with a virulent flu. Or a man having a severe asthma attack. Or a pregnant woman with a complication of pregnancy.

READ MORE ›
alt_text

Wednesday, Mar 22 2017

Top-Tier Turkish Journalists Receive Inside View of Hadassah Hospital

A delegation of top-tier Turkish journalists, accompanied by representatives from the Israel Foreign Ministry, visited Hadassah Hospital Ein Kerem this month, marking the first time a high-level Turkish delegation has come to Israel since the new reconciliation agreement was signed between Israel and Turkey.

READ MORE ›
alt_text

Wednesday, Mar 22 2017

Cypriot Health Minister Helps Save Israeli Patient

Whether it was a newborn baby with a severe heart defect or a pregnant woman with an unusual ectopic pregnancy, the Hadassah Medical Organization has been known to save the lives of Cypriot patients by helicoptering them to its hospital for complex emergency treatments. Recently, however, it was the Cypriot Health Minister who helped save the life of an Israeli patient.

READ MORE ›

Donation Questions

donorservices@hadassah.org

(800) 928-0685

Membership Questions

membership@hadassah.org

(800) 664-5646

Missions Department

missions@hadassah.org

(800) 237-1517

Contact Us

40 Wall Street

New York, NY 10005

support@hadassah.org

More ›

Show More