Kari Coldwell was 20 years old when she was in an auto accident and suffered a “whiplash” type injury. At first inspection, the doctors told her that she would be sore, but there would be no long term issues. Her mother was understandably relieved.
However, it was not long after that Kari began having strange neurological symptoms: migraine headaches; stabbing pain; numbness and tingling in her neck and head; and weird spasms in her ankles, wrists, & thighs.
The doctors said she was fine, so it made no sense!
The pain would awaken her every few hours, caused difficulty sleeping and endless nightmares. Three plus years post-accident, her balance problems forced her to use a cane, then a motorized chair.
Even though she suffered horribly, she always kept a positive outlook and smile on her face. After years of searching for answers, Chiari Malformation was finally diagnosed.
Kari went into her decompression hopeful that some of her symptoms may finally subside. She was looking forward to getting back to the life she dreamed of before the accident took everything away from her.
Her decompression surgery itself went well, but after not getting the symptom relief she had hoped for, the surgeon went back in and did more surgeries. It only made things worse. In addition to her headaches and dizziness issues,
she was having symptoms of open sores that would not heal. Her mother, Dori decided to get a second opinion and that is when a TETHERED CORD was discovered.
When the surgeons went in to untether her spinal cord, they said she was full of infection and that the surgeon has not seen that much “shit” in anyone before, so he cleaned her out and her sores started to spontaneously heal. Once again the family had hope that Kari was finally with the right doctors and would begin to heal. However, six weeks post-op, Kari began having severe breathing issues and coughing up a pink foamy-phlegm substance.
Dori rushed her to her doctor.
They did an OXYGEN SATURATION test and her result was 40-where 100 is normal.
She was then rushed to the ER. It took hours to get her into a room and the pulmonologist never came into see her.
Everything was done over a phone consultation and the doctors made the determination that she was suffering from WALKING PNEUMONIA.
She was sent to a private room and waited until a nurse finally paid attention and determined she needed to be in ICU. Once in ICU she CODED and a team rushed in and INTUBATED her, but she did not improve and over the next few days declined until she had a massive seizure and her organs began shutting down.
It was later discovered she passed away from a pulmonary embolism and never had pneumonia or an infection at all.
Kari and her siblings,-who will take part in this documentary-have all been diagnosed with EHLERS DANLOS syndrome as well.
They are still fighting for proper treatment and supportive care.
Kari's mother Dori struggles with knowing her daughter could have been saved. There were numerous opportunities for medical personnel to have intervened, but chose to ignore and even blame her for her illnesses. The pulmonologist who was advising other doctors over the phone never once met Kari or her parents in person. Kari was written off as someone who did not want to get better by the medical establishment. She was fully aware that she was dying and nobody listened.