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Lifelong paralyzed, bedridden woman dies at 62

Lifelong paralyzed, bedridden woman dies at 62

Taipei, July 3 (CNA) Chiang Yu-chao (???) had suffered from cerebral edema from birth and was paralyzed from the neck down for her entire life. Until she passed away three days ago, she had spent 62 years lying face down on a bed. "Mei-mei (Chiang's nickname) is gone," said her 91-year-old father Chiang Chin-shui (???), expressionlessly. Chiang's body was as small as a child's, her four limbs were atrophied and stiff, and she could only lie on her stomach. She had never seen the sun, never gone to school and never left her bed in all her 62 years. Chiang was born in 1953. When it was about time for her to learn to walk, her mother Chiang Lin Ting-chih (????) realized that something was wrong because the child could not stand. Failing to find the cause of the problem in Taitung, her parents took her to National Taiwan University Hospital (NTUH) in Taipei. She was diagnosed with cerebral edema, and NTUH offered her parents NT$8,000 in return for keeping her at the hospital for medical research purposes. The couple, however, turned down the offer and insisted on bringing home their child and taking care of her themselves. At home, they struggled to come to terms with their daughter's illness. Feeling some level of guilt for the child's condition, the parents went on their knees and begged for her forgiveness, prayed to Buddha, and sought every possible cure around the country, but nothing helped. The child remained immobile. The couple finally decided to stop lamenting and instead to take the best possible care of their daughter. The mother attended to her daughter's personal needs, washing her body and changing her diapers. When the mother passed away in 2010 at the age of 85, the task was taken over by the father. In light of the father's advanced age, however, the family later hired a caregiver. Three days ago, Chiang stopped eating and started breaking out in cold sweats, but there was no expression of pain on her face. She died peacefully. "Mei-mei finally left this bed," said her eldest brother Chiang Fu-lung (???). When funeral directors received the body, they were amazed to find that after lying in bed for 62 years, Chiang did not have a single bedsore. (By Tyson Lu and Y.F. Low)


Updated : 2021-09-17 12:00 GMT+08:00