Relief as Shanae's eyes open
By BRAD PETERSEN
SHANAE Doolan is off the critical list and should be home by Friday to continue her recovery from the serious head injury that almost killed her.
The seven-year-old was on life support at Royal Children's Hospital Brisbane for more than 12 hours after she fractured her skull when knocked off her bike in Bundaberg last Friday.
Shanae was hit by a car near the driveway of her Pecton Place home and was not wearing a helmet at the time.
Shanae's mother Trisha Doolan said her daughter had described the drama as "a bad dream'', but that she was now improving well.
"It was a great relief to see her eyes open. Really, I just can't explain how it felt. Joy, relief and just so grateful that she has come through this,'' Mrs Doolan said.
"What happened has been very traumatic for all of us, just horrible.
"It was touch and go there for a while. They did tell me at one stage to be prepared for the worst.''
Mrs Doolan said Shanae was now conscious and communicating well but she faced at least a three-month period of rehabilitation.
It is not known what the lasting effects of her injury will be.
St Mary's Catholic School Year 2 students were told yesterday of their classmate's stirring recovery.
"It was just wonderful news for the students to hear,'' principal Madonna Devitt said.
"And this incident has been a reminder to us that we also have a duty of care to continually keep our students informed on road safety.''
Through a statement, the treating neurosurgeon at Royal Children's Hospital said Shanae "was doing very well and we are all pleased with this outstanding result''.
A hospital spokesperson said Shanae had told nurses she was looking forward to going home.
"Shanae is excited about flying. She said, 'I'm going on a plane and I'm going to make sure I'm awake this time,'' the spokesperson said.
The Doolan family yesterday expressed their gratitude to staff at Bundaberg Base Hospital and Royal Children's Hospital.