A Catatonic Woman Woke Up After 20 Years: What Happened To April Burrell?

, ,


Catatonic Woman Woke Up After 20 Years: Shocking Story

Catatonic woman woke up from a 20-year state, leaving doctors baffled and astonishing those who hear her story. April Burrell, once unresponsive for over two decades, has reawakened, sparking a desire for understanding among both the medical community and the public.

But what happened to April Burrell?

April’s journey began in 1995 while she pursued her accounting studies at the University of Maryland Eastern Shore.

Without warning, she fell into a catatonic state, rendering her unable to care for herself, recognize loved ones, or perform basic tasks. A diagnosis of severe schizophrenia led to her transfer to a mental hospital in New York.

According to sources, April Burrell, described as a thriving, healthy teenager without any notable mental distress, suddenly faced a devastating turn of events in 1995.

Catatonic Woman Woke Up After Almost Two Decades

A phone call from one of her professors informed her family that she had been hospitalized, her state of incoherence raising deep concerns. To respect her privacy, The Washington Post didn’t disclose the precise nature of the traumatic experience she endured.

Related: 5 Mental Health Disorders And Their Significant Portrayals In Pop Culture

Following a few months at a short-term psychiatric hospital, April received a diagnosis of schizophrenia. Despite her family’s best efforts to support her, April’s condition necessitated constant care. In 2000, she transitioned to Pilgrim Psychiatric Center for long-term treatment.

Catatonia, a condition where individuals appear awake but demonstrate an apparent lack of awareness and responsiveness to their surroundings, can arise from various causes.

Catatonic Woman Woke Up After Almost Two Decades…

In 2000, Sander Markx, the director of precision psychiatry at Columbia University, encountered April as a student. She became his first patient, and her condition remained one of the most severe he had encountered.

When she was diagnosed with schizophrenia, Sander Markx, then a promising medical student, made a fateful decision to join Pilgrim Psychiatric Center in Brentwood, NY, where he encountered April.

This encounter deeply impacted him, although he was unable to offer assistance at the time. Years later, another trainee informed Markx about a catatonic patient at the nurses’ desk, and to his astonishment, he realized it was April.

Despite undergoing various treatments over the years, including antipsychotics, mood stabilizers, and electroconvulsive therapy, her condition remained unchanged.

In 2018, Dr. Markx made a groundbreaking discovery—alongside her schizophrenia, April also suffered from lupus, an autoimmune disorder capable of attacking the brain.

Following treatment for her condition and a series of cognitive assessments, the catatonic woman awakened suddenly in 2020.

Due to the COVID-19 restrictions, it took until the previous year for her to finally reunite with her family. During the long-awaited reunion, she demonstrated recognition of her brother and possessed vivid childhood memories.

After visiting April with his wife and children, April’s brother Guy Burrell shared, “She was hugging me, she was holding my hand.” He wanted to throw a parade because he was so happy to see her like that.

Dr. Markx, moved by April’s transformation, aims to extend his assistance to other patients. He revealed to The Washington Post that other catatonic patients with autoimmune conditions exist.

Related: Finding Light In The Darkness: Top Mental Health Podcasts To Inspire And Support You

He expressed that the notion that people are gone in these mental institutes and that they come back still has always stuck with him. A he continues to look for patients who could be awakened.

He emphasized that “These are the forgotten souls,”. He also added that they were not just improving the lives of these people, but bringing them back from a place that they could come back from.

While April’s story is undeniably remarkable, Dr. Markx remains eager to replicate her success in as many patients as possible, granting them a fresh lease on life.

Related: How To Overcome Depression: 11 Coping Skills

April’s remarkable transformation serves as a reminder of the resilience of the human spirit and the potential for renewed life even in the face of seemingly insurmountable odds. Share your thoughts in the comments below!

— Share —

— About the Author —

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Up Next

Armani Milby ‘Baby Hulk’: Defying the Odds Of A Rare Condition

Kentucky mom Chelsey Milby defied the odds when her daughter, Armani Milby, aka “Baby Hulk,” overcame a rare congenital condition known as lymphangioma through a miraculous birth.

Baby Hulk’s Incredible Journey: Defying the Odds

This condition causes benign growths in the lymph vessels and can lead to breathing and vision problems. Armani, now nine months old, earned the endearing nickname “baby hulk” or “mini hulk” due to the peculiar appearance of her swollen arms.

The journey was far from easy for Chelsey and Armani. At just 17 weeks in

Up Next

Childhood Tragedies: Understanding the Risks of Accidental Fentanyl Exposure

Recent cases have highlighted the alarming issue of accidental fentanyl exposure in children, resulting in tragic consequences. Fentanyl, a potent narcotic, has been linked to several high-profile deaths, including Prince, Tom Petty, and Mac Miller.

However, more recent reports have brought attention to children and teens who have unintentionally encountered this dangerous drug, with some losing their lives.

The Alarming Rise of Accidental Fentanyl Exposure

In September, a Bronx da

Up Next

Underappreciated And Overstressed: Men Who Work In Stressful Jobs Are Likely To Develop Heart Disease, Says New Study

Undervalued men who work in stressful jobs, may face a significantly higher risk of developing life-threatening heart disease, according to a recent study published in the Journal of the American Heart Association, Circulation: Cardiovascular Quality and Outcomes.

Canadian researchers conducted this ambitious study spanning nearly two decades, investigating the impact of stress and “effort-reward imbalance” (ERI) on coronary health.

Men Who Work In Stressful Jobs Are Likely To Develop Heart Disease

The study reveals that men grappling with either

Up Next

The Best Time To Workout For Weight Loss, New Study Reveals

According to a new study, the best time to workout for weight loss is in the early morning, between 7 a.m. and 9 a.m. Let’s learn the science behind it!

In a recent study published in the journal Obesity, researchers at Franklin Pierce University in New Hampshire have shed light on the optimal timing for weight loss through exercise. 

Why is morning time the best time to workout?

This research aimed to investigate whether the timing of exercise had any impact on weight loss outcomes, beyond factors like frequency, intensity, and duration of p

Up Next

Navigating Screen Time for Kids: What New Research Reveals

A new study and existing research shed light on the contentious issue of screen time for kids, revealing mixed findings. Let us explore more about this!

While screen time guidelines have evolved over the years, the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) no longer provides specific limits on screen time, emphasizing the importance of the quality of interactions with digital media rather than quantity.

Recent Japanese Study Raises Concerns

In September, t

Up Next

TikTok’s Color-Coded Sibling Saga: Pink Sister Vs Purple Sister

Join the colorful debate as siblings take sides in the TikTok “pink sister vs purple sister” trend. Which sibling are you? Let’s pick a side now!

Pink Sister vs Purple Sister TikTok Craze

The TikTok trend known as the “Pink Sister vs. Purple Sister” has taken the sibling world by storm, causing a playful divide among brothers and sisters. This phenomenon, which initially gained traction in 2022, was reignited earlier this year when Lucinda Price discussed it on the “Flex & Froomes” podcast.

Up Next

Roman Empire Trend: Why Are Men Obsessed With It?

Heard about the latest viral trend? It turns out, many guys are secretly obsessed with the Roman Empire, and it’s leaving everyone surprised. Let’s dive into the Roman empire trend.

The Roman Empire Trend: What’s Got Men Thinking Daily?

In a surprising TikTok trend, women have uncovered a seemingly bizarre fixation that many of their male partners and friends have with the Roman Empire, a historical era that spanned from 27 B.C. to 476 A.D.

The trend be