A young woman given just a 10% chance of survival after suffering huge injuries in a four-storey fall in Ramsgate has defied predictions and is now working on her recovery at a specialist centre in Dartford.
Nikita Davis, 23, fell from a roof at Arklow Square last August and was blue-lighted to QEQM Hospital and then flown to King’s Hospital in London.
Parents Michelle and Glen rushed to King’s to be by their daughter’s side.
Michelle, 54, said: “We received a call from a neighbour to say Nikita had fallen. Paramedics turned up and she was rushed to QEQM where the air ambulance was waiting for her. She had to be sedated because of her injuries and was taken to King’s.
“We rushed there at 2am and the prognosis was not good, they gave her a 10% chance of survival.
“She had broken bones, a split liver, her lungs had collapsed and then the next day they told us she had a traumatic, severe brain injury and said she would probably not survive.
“We went there every day although we were only allowed to visit her for a short period each day.”
Nikita was in intensive care for three months before being moved to another ward although she was still in a coma and then in a vegetative state for several months. She had also undergone a tracheostomy which involved a tube being inserted into her windpipe to help her breathe.
Nikita was eventually moved to Northwick Hospital in November.
Michelle said: “They started to give her new brain medication which stimulates the brain and starts remapping. She started making a bit of progress, bit by bit, very tiny steps, and we got to the point where she was communicating. But they took the tracheostomy out and stopped the brain medication at the same time and she nearly died again.
“After about three weeks they took her back to theatre and put the tracheostomy back – which she still has – and that stabilised her. In January this year we were basically back to square one, she was back in a semi-vegetative state.
“We continued to encourage her and to be with her every day to get better.”
But Nikita battled back. In May she was moved to a neurological care home in Dartford and has been making progress.
Michelle said: “She is doing quite well there. They have her talking a few words and she knows all her family. We go every day, we show her pictures every day and she is slowly improving bit by bit. All her injuries have healed apart from the brain injury, she has very severe brain damage. She will never walk again and will need constant, round the clock care.”
As part of the bid to help Nikita’s recovery, and eventual return home, her parents and 12 siblings want to raise the money to buy a specialised wheelchair which is manufactured in America.
Michelle said: “The chair will give her more independence. It is lightweight so will go in a normal vehicle, it has a special tilt position so if she wants to be in a certain position it will support her.”
The specialist chair cannot be obtained through the NHS and has to be custom made at a cost of between £4000-£5000.
To raise funds family and friends are undertaking a bike ride from Ramsgate town centre to the care home in Dartford, a stretch of 70 miles, which they estimate will take around eight hours including breaks.
The ride will be live-streamed and take place on August 17, leaving Ramsgate (by Café Nero) at 6am.
Michelle who, with husband Glen and family, runs Odins Miniatures model shop in King Street, says the aim is to further aid Nikita’s recovery so they can bring her home.
She added: “Nikita was always a very active, loving person, she loved anybody and would give someone her last pound if they needed it.
“She loved to dance and laugh, she loved life. She’s very bubbly and had been working at the Comfort Inn (San Clu) on a training scheme. She loved being around people.”
The fundraiser, set up by family friend Jay, has a £5,000 target.
Jay said: “Nikita has always been her own person, she has always been confident, bubbly and happy.”
Michelle added: “Any money left over will be split between the air ambulance, which initially saved Nikita’s life, and the home for their hard work and dedication, pushing her to get better day by day.