The fall and hospitalisation
At about 5.45pm on Wednesday April 3rd, 2013, I was standing in the kitchen at home opening the mail. My next clear recollection was laying in a hospital bed.
What happened? Where am I? From what we can piece together, I had fainted, hit my head on the kitchen bench and then fell back hitting the back of my head directly onto the kitchen tiles. I was laying on the floor until my wife, Nicki, arrived home at 6.30pm and called the ambulance.
I was admitted to the Head Injury Unit of the Princess Alexandra Hospital. The result of the fall left me with 7 head fractures (skull, eye socket and jaw), bleeding from the ear, a burst ear drum, bruised eye socket and face, and a laceration to the back of my head. In the first week of my hospitalisation I also had pneumonia. From the point where I could communicate with any clarity it was also apparent that I was suffering from some loss of hearing, loss of peripheral vision, loss of taste and smell, neuropathy in the arms and hands (pins and needles and dexterity issues) and later it was discovered that I had damaged the vestibular apparatus (the body’s balance mechanism) in both ears.