One of Prince Charles’s closest friends Lord Bathurst was bitten by a deer fly and spent eight days in a coma and four months in hospital after suffering multiple organ failures when he contracted septicaemia as a result of the bite. He was admitted to Cheltenham General Hospital on July 26 after complaining of acute joint pain and high fever.
Lord Bathurst, the 9th Earl Bathurst has undergone six operations, which included having his hip joint removed. He has now finally returned home after four months in hospital.
His wife, Lady Bathurst, described the homecoming as “Christmas coming early.” She tweeted a photograph of her husband surrounded by his family outside their Gloucestershire home.
Lord Bathurst wished to highlight the dangers of septicaemia and he praised the staff who nursed him back to health.
“I hope my experience will highlight the terrible effects of septicaemia and the symptoms,” he said.
“Whilst my recovery will eventually be realised, I am under no illusion as to how close I was to losing my life, and it is vitally important that we all familiarise ourselves with the causes, so it can be identified and treated fast.”
Lady Bathurst said: “It is suspected his infection came from an insect whose bite can cause severe repercussions. He became increasingly ill, and three days later, he suffered multi-organ failure and had to be rushed to the Department of Critical Care in Cheltenham.”
Lady Bathurst said her husband’s life “hung in the balance” for four weeks but that, “against all odds”, he eventually began to recover. He was then transferred to a general ward and spent a month in a Bone Infection Unit at John Radcliffe Hospital in Oxford.
Lord Bathurst is temporarily confined to a wheelchair while he is undergoing treatment to rebuild his hip and pelvic area.
“It was a truly frightening time for us, and, to be honest, I don’t remember much of it as I was in a state of total shock. But the NHS was magnificent,” Lady Bathurst said.
“The doctors and nurses were absolutely amazing once the diagnosis had been confirmed and their care, determination and commitment, not only to my husband but also to me personally, was second to none. We are both incredibly grateful and humble for all they did.”