Miraculous: Edinburgh University student survived being gored by huge American bison bull
A teenage student is lucky to be alive after she was gored in the thigh by a bison while hiking in the United States.
The enraged bull threw Amelia (Mia) Dean 15ft in the air after piercing her left upper leg with one of its massive horns.
It ruptured the 19-year-old’s femoral artery and she could have bled out in between two and eight minutes.
But Mia clung to life and was still conscious when paramedics arrived on the scene at Custer State Park in the Black Hills of South Dakota, 20 minutes after the attack.
As she lay unable to move the bison stood over her before Mia’s friend was able to lead it away.
She was taken Rapid City Hospital where a surgeon by-passed the damaged artery but has been left paralysed below the knee. Mia is still suffering from severe nerve pain, numbness and hypersensitivity, paralysis and is unable to walk without walking aids, and managing only about 20 yards.
The hospital had referred Mia to an expert surgeon at the Mayo Clinic for further surgery to repair the nerve damage but that offer was later withdrawn.
And while her travel insurance will pay some medical bills, Mia cannot be signed off to fly home to the UK until she has further, complex procedures.
Her parents, Matthew and Jacqueline, have launched a £140,000 GoFundMe appeal to pay for highly complex injury on the tibial nerve which has been fully severed and the peroneal nerve which has been trisected
Speaking from her hospital bed, Mia said: “It’s a surreal enough experience let alone the fact that we weren’t doing anything that really warranted it. We were just having a walk in the park when we came across this bison.
“I was really dehydrated, it was really sunny, and we’d both given our water to the dog so we tried go go around it but it got so close I could have touched its head. Then it attacked me.
“I remember feeling the pressure on my hip. My hip being pushed back and I remember the sensation of flying in the air and going head over heels
“The bison stuck around and his hooves were right over my head. I remember them being like right by my head.”
Amelia was originally traveling around Europe when a new friend asked if she wanted to go on a road trip in the United States and she was attacked on her second day there.
Her mother said: “They were over 100 yards away and the bison just ran down the hill at her. It came right up and stopped in front of her and then apparently, they had a bit of eye contact for a few seconds before it attacked her.”
Before the attack Mia had been accepted to commence studying at Edinburgh University and was enjoying a final holiday when she was attacked by the bison in June.
Jacqueline added: “We have no idea why this happened to our little girl, and simply wish for her to be able to walk and dance again and live her life to the full, without chronic long-term pain.”
To contribute to the GoFundMe appeal go to: https://gf.me/v/c/gfm/mia-dean-after-being-attacked-by-a-bison
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