Pregnant bride’s tragic wedding death
A pregnant bride died from a stroke minutes before arriving at the altar - leaving her groom as a single father when doctors managed to save their baby's life.
Jessica Guedes, 30, a nurse, was six months pregnant when she fell ill in the limo on the way to the church last Sunday in Sao Paulo, The Sun reported.
At first, her family thought she was suffering from anxiety due to wedding nerves after she complained of feeling dizzy with pains in her neck.
Because of this, the entourage was running late and they were unaware the victim was suffering from the pre-eclampsia that would shortly lead to her death.
The healthy bride was declared brain dead by doctors shortly after arriving at hospital.
Pre-eclampsia is a condition that can go unnoticed in pregnant women or those who have just given birth.
It causes high blood pressure and significant amounts of protein in the urine, meaning red blood cells break down, and eventually leads to seizures and liver and kidney failure.
Her fiance, firefighterLieutenant Flavio Goncalvez, 31, who was already waiting at the altar, was surprised by the delay.
But when Jessica arrived, a relative rushed into the venue pleading for help after the first-time mum-to-be passed out in the car.
ON HER WEDDING DAY
In an interview with Brazilian Crescer magazine, the groom said: "I was worried because I was waiting for her at the altar and she was taking ages to come in.
"A cousin of hers ran down the carpet and told me that she had passed out.
"I opened the car door and she was lying down but regained consciousness to talk to me. I said to her, 'Baby, I'm here'. She replied that everything was fine, but that she had a severe pain in the back of her neck. At that moment, I became a rescuer, as I have been for seven years with the fire department.
DECLARED BRAIN DEAD
"I took her out of the limo, started first aid and asked for help from my firefighter friends who were there as guests."
Jessica was taken to a state maternity hospital in central Sao Paulo. However, due to the complexity of the case, she was transferred to the private Pro Matre Paulista Maternity Hospital.
According to the medical report, the mother had a stroke, due to pre-eclampsia and internal bleeding, and surgeons were forced to remove the uterus.
Given the severity of the case, the medical team performed an emergency caesarean section to save the 29-week-old baby's life, and the young mum, who had been declared brain dead, died after the operation.
Sophia was born weighing 930 grams and was just 34 centimetres in length. She is in the neonatal intensive care unit and is likely to be in hospital for at least two months.
A relative of the victim, said: "Jessica was attending prenatal care, had no high blood pressure during her pregnancy and was healthy, doing physical activity and eating well."
In a statement, the hospital confirmed Jessica was admitted to the maternity department last Sunday.
BABY DAUGHTER SOPHIA
"At the moment, the entire maternity team is prioritising the support, comfort and attention of the families of Lieutenant Goncalvez and the patients' (by) helping them with all necessary measures," the hospital statement said.
A video of the last moments of the bride shows her happily waving to the camera in her gown on her wedding day. But within a few hours, she was dead and her groom was left with bittersweet emotions as he learns to come to terms with the loss of his bride while taking comfort in the birth of his child.
Images capture the incredible moment the premature child responds to her father's voice by opening her eyes, turning to look at him and seemingly reaching for him with an outstretched hand that creeps out from underneath the covers.
The bereaved father said his wife-to-be was a really cheerful person who loved life.
"I was so looking forward to becoming her husband and becoming a father. I will be strong and I will not weaken in the face of adversity," the brave father said.
"The love of my life taught me how to respect and treat a woman well so that I could learn how to take care of our daughter.
"I still can't believe this has happened. It seems like I'm in a sad movie, and you cry, cry, cry but leave the movie theatre knowing it was just a movie."
He added: "However, in my case, the movie will never be over, and the suffering will go on forever."
Following the unforeseen tragedy, the new father discovered his health plan failed to cover private maternity care.
But within a couple of days of friends setting up an online kitty, colleagues from the military police helped raise more than the $A36,000 needed to cover the expenses.
The family decided to respect Jessica's request to donate her organs, and she was buried on Tuesday following the release of her body.
In August this year doctors in the Czech Republic delivered a healthy baby girl 117 days after her mother was declared brain dead.
The unnamed mum, 27, suffered a stroke in April and was kept on life support to keep the pregnancy going and regularly moved her legs to simulate walking to help the child's growth.
This article originally appeared on The Sun and was reproduced with permission