Losing hair, skin and nails: Student undergoes dramatic transformation after suffering allergic reaction to medication

26 March 2015 / 1 year 7 months ago

Khaliah Shaw was a public health graduate student at Georgia College and State University when she was reportedly diagnosed with bipolar disorder and prescribed the medication, Lamotrigine, in 2013.

Within a month of taking the drug, she developed a rash on her face and the skin on her lips had started to peel off.

She then visited the local ER and was initially diagnosed with the flu, reports AsianTown via The Daily Mail.

But two days later, Miss Shaw woke up in excruciating pain, with the skin on her face, neck, back and chest falling off and her mouth covered in blisters.

She returned to the ER in Oconee County. 'They put me into a medically-induced coma, because they knew it was going to be really painful,' Miss Shaw said, adding that she was then taken 90 miles to Atlanta's Grady Hospital's Burns Unit.

Five weeks later the student woke, but could not see and was breathing via a tracheotomy.

She had lost all of her hair and her fingernails had all fallen off. She was reportedly later told she had also lost a whopping 80 to 90 per cent of her skin.

Although Miss Shaw was, as she describes it, 'essentially almost blind', her vision gradually started coming back and she saw herself for the first time since suffering the devastating allergic reaction.

To her horror, she was bald, with pink and white patchy skin instead of brown.

'It was a shock to see that... all my hair had come off. I didn't have any fingernails,' Miss Shaw told the news station.

She also started to suffer from seizures, which 'were a result of being heavily sedated for a long period of time', her blog states.

Doctors arranged for her to undertake physical and occupational therapy. Seven weeks after being transferred to the specialist burn center, Miss Shaw was able to go home.

Thirteen months on, the brave former student continues to see a variety of doctors, specialists, and therapists on a weekly basis.

She has moved back in with her mother and still cannot see properly.

"I would love to have my vision back,' said Miss Shaw, who has put her graduate studies on hold and is forced to wear sunglasses, even when indoors, because any bright light is painful to her.

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