Sarah Silverman: "I'm lucky to be alive" after three weeks in ICU
The actress and comedian developed a throat infection called Epiglottitis
July 10, 2016
Actress and comedian Sarah Silverman describes herself as lucky to be alive, after three weeks in the Intensive Care Unit at Cedars Sinai Hospital in Los Angeles. She checked in with what she thought was a routine throat infection. The actress said ultimately she was diagnosed with Epiglottitis, a sometimes fatal infection that took 3 weeks for her to overcome. She says further that three people she's close to have died within the last year
The full text of the actresses Facebook post is below.
Epiglottitis is a bacterial infection of the epiglottis, or throat. Epiglottitis is an inflammation of the epiglottis — the flap at the base of the tongue that keeps food from going into the trachea (windpipe). Due to its place in the airway, swelling of this structure can interfere with breathing, and constitutes a medical emergency. Infection can cause the epiglottis to obstruct or completely close off the windpipe. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Epiglottitis
Hi. This is me telling everyone in my life at once why I haven't been around. This will not interest everyone so feel free to disregard.
I was in the ICU all of last week and I am insanely lucky to be alive. Don't even know why I went to the doctor, it was just a sore throat. But I had a freak case of epiglottitis.
I owe my life to Dr. Shawn Nasseri, Dr. Robert Naruse, Dr. Rob Huizenga, every nurse, and every technician & orderly at Cedars who's punch-the-clock jobs happen to save human lives on the regular.
There's something that happens when three people you're so close to die within a year and then YOU almost die but don't. (That was me. I'm the one that didn't die.) It's a strange dichotomy between, "Why me?" and the other, "Why me?"
They couldn't put me fully to sleep for the recovery process because my blood pressure's too low. I was drugged just enough to not feel the pain and have no idea what was happening or where I was. They had to have my hands restrained to keep me from pulling out my breathing tube. My friend Stephanie said I kept writing "was I in an accident?"
When I woke up 5 days later I didn't remember anything. I thanked everyone at the ICU for my life, went home, and then slowly as the opiates faded away, remembered the trauma of the surgery & spent the first two days home kind of free-falling from the meds / lack of meds and the paralyzing realization that nothing matters. Luckily that was followed by the motivating revelation that nothing matters.
I'm so moved by my real-life hero, Michael, and amazing Sissies (blood & otherwise) & friendos, who all coordinated so that there wasn't a moment I was alone. It makes me cry. Which hurts my throat. So stop.
Anyway there are some funny stories too.
I couldn't speak for a while and I don't remember a lot of my "lucid" time, but Amy (the Zvi) told me I stopped a nurse - like it was an emergency - furiously wrote down a note and gave it to her. When she looked at it, it just said, "Do you live with your mother?" next to a drawing of a penis.
Also, when I first woke up and the breathing tube came out, I still couldn't talk and they gave me a board of letters to communicate. My loved ones stood there, so curious what was going to be the first thing I had to say. They followed my finger, rapt, as I pointed from letter to letter until I finally spelled out, "Did you see 'Hello My Name is Doris.'"
I love you all.
Your friend, Sarah
Sarah Kate Silverman (born December 1, 1970) is an American stand-up comedian, actress, producer and writer. Her comedy addresses social taboos and controversial topics, such as racism, sexism and religion, having her comic character endorse them in a sarcastic fashion. For her work on television she won two Primetime Emmy Awards.
Silverman was a writer and occasional performer on Saturday Night Live, and starred in and produced The Sarah Silverman Program, which ran from 2007 to 2010 on Comedy Central, for which she was nominated for a Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series. She released an autobiography The Bedwetter in 2010. She also appeared in other television programs, such as Mr Show and V.I.P., and starred in films, including Who's the Caboose? (1997), School of Rock (2003), Wreck-It Ralph (2012) and A Million Ways to Die in the West (2014).
In 2015, she starred in the drama I Smile Back, for which she was nominated for a Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Leading Role.