An Edinburgh University student has been left in hospital with a severed artery after being gored by a bison during a hike in the United States.
Mia Dean was on the second day of a month-long trip across the country when she and a friend were charged at by the one-tonne behemoth at Custer State Park in South Dakota.
The 19-year-old was thrown several feet in the air by the animal, which also completely separated her femoral artery and caused severe damage to both her tibial and peroneal nerves, leaving her minutes from death.
Her travel insurers paid for initial bypass procedure to save her life, but are now refusing to pay for even the examination by the specialist of her nerve injury.
Parents Jacqueline and Matthew have now started a crowdfunding campaign to help pay the massive $140,000 medical bill after she was accepted to the Mayo Clinic.
However, her dreams of starting the term at the capital institution now appears to be in tatters while she awaits treatment.
Mia’s mum and dad, from Brockham in England, said: “We are beyond fortunate that our daughter is still breathing, as she should have bled out in two-to-eight minutes after the severed artery and the ambulance didn’t arrive for 20 minutes. It is a miracle that she is alive today.
“The staff at Rapid City Hospital have been like a second family and have done everything they can at this point, saving both Mia’s life and leg, performing a bypass of the femoral artery.
“However, as the artery and muscle damage is healing, Mia is still suffering from severe nerve pain, numbness and hypersensitivity, paralysis and limited mobility below the knee, being unable to walk without walking aids, and managing only about 20 yards.
“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