Divinity Crittendon thought she would have a routine delivery for her second child in April at the Riley Maternity Tower. But, her condition suddenly declined. Just hours after arriving at the hospital, she went into cardiac arrest multiple times. The team delivered Divinity's baby via an emergency c-section right in the labor and delivery room.
The working diagnosis is that Divinity experienced an amniotic fluid embolism, which causes an allergic-like response from the mother when the baby’s amniotic fluid enters the mom’s bloodstream during labor.
The condition causes "cardiovascular collapse" in which the heart stops beating, lungs stop working and everything shuts down, according to Dr. Nikki Scott who delivered Divinity's son. This rare pregnancy complication also causes intense bleeding. This required Divinity to receive more than 270 units of blood. Additionally, Divinity had be put on ECMO, which is a machine that acts as the heart and lungs to give a patient time to stabilize.
This situation unfolded during an overnight shift. The specialized labor and delivery team was ready to rush Divinity into the operating room, where she required an emergency hysterectomy.
Three months after this ordeal, Divinity returned to the Riley Maternity Tower where she reunited with members of her care team.
“It's truly a blessing,” Divinity said. “Because without this hospital, I would not be walking in here. I just feel like God put me here. Because, you know, he knew that there will be a team of doctors that can handle whatever was going to be thrown.”
"It was a full circle moment," said Dr. Scott. "This was the hardest day of my career, and I will never forget April 7. And, I'll never forget Divinity's face and her family. And so to see them doing so well, to see them thriving. You know, that's why we do what we do. That's why we, you know, wake up every morning and work the long hours to prepare. It's for moments like these."