Emily Wornes is slowly recovering from a serious accident three years ago.
Emily Wornes is slowly recovering from a serious accident three years ago. Warren Lynam

Woman fights back after 15m fall in hotel collapse

"YOU will never walk again" is not something a healthy, happy woman should ever have to hear.

Three years ago Emily Wornes, 26, was in a Peru hotel which collapsed. She fell 15m, breaking her back, pelvis, sacrum, arm, both feet and her leg.

The Moffat Beach resident was initially rushed to hospital "in an ambulance which resembled a removalist van, with no medical supplies and no bed" before being flown to California for treatment where she was diagnosed as a paraplegic with loss of bowel, bladder and sexual function and faced possible amputation.

"When I got to the States they took the bandages down and what happened was all the flesh on my feet was rotting," she said.

"The wounds in my feet were the depth of half a tennis ball, it was the most disgusting thing. The smell was so bad.

"They spoke of amputating my right leg as that side was worse."

Emily decided against amputation and within three months she stood up for the first time.

"I kept telling myself they don't know me, I'm going to walk."

To keep busy, Emily started studying holistic counselling and wants to "help other girls with traumas".

As if she hadn't endured enough, one of her biggest injuries is chronic nerve pain, stopping her return to work.

The debilitating burning and stabbing sensation sends her to hospital weekly for morphine injections with two more days in recovery.

But there is hope: there could be an end to the nerve pain, but it will cost another trip to the US and $30,000.

With no help from the Peruvian hotel, the Wornes family has copped all the medical bills.

Emily's friend Clara Pearce has set up a fundraiser to get her to the US and have her at home instead of hospital for Christmas.

To donate, visit www. giveemilyapainfreelife. wordpress.com.