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The Real Sleeping Beauty -

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(generated from captions) THEME MUSIC fell into a coma. 'In 1984, 18-year-old Sarah Scantlin For 20 years, she slept.' She just lay, pretty much unresponsive for 20 years.

never wake up. 'Doctors said she would extraordinary happened. Then, in 2005, something Sarah spoke.' For the first time in 20 years, REPORTER: It's an amazing day Hi. A daughter who's been silent for the Scantlin family. for 20 years is now talking again. certainly a story of hope. REPORTER: Sarah's story, beaming through this dark cloud. That was a huge ray of sun this is not possible. Neurologists all over said and you talk to her And I said, "Oh yeah, you go there

that this isn't possible". and you tell me

after 20 years. I don't know why she has come back can give us an answer. I don't know that anyone the real sleeping beauty. 'This is the story of in the midwest of America. Hutchinson is a small town in Kansas, forgotten corner of this empty state. It is an old farming community in a town lies Golden Plains Nursing Home. In a quiet suburb on the outskirts of

and infirm residents. It cares for a 100 elderly to a medical miracle. It is also the home convention when she woke Sarah Scantlin defied medical for 20 years. after being in a coma-like state had given up all hope Her friends and family that she would return to them. she was lost forever.' Doctors had told them you've kind of reached the plateau We know that after about a year, small changes that can sometimes in your recovery process. There are

but the are minimal. be significant to family members

to you dies. It's a lot like somebody very dear It's the day before the funeral. And you never get to go. Sarah awoke after 20 years.' 'But incredibly, has somebody been 'Never before in medical history and started speaking again. in a coma-like state for so long

best friend, Lori Shockley is Sarah's they met at the local high school.' since sixth grade. I have been friends with Sarah we became best of friends, We immediately hit it off, almost sisters if you will. making the three-hour journey 'For the last 20 years, Lori has been

in Kansas City. to visit Sarah from her home were the cause of great sadness Until recently, these visits by silence.' as she was always greeted I saw very little changes in Sarah. Over the course for the 20 years, I didn't expect to go in Every time I went to see her,

And that's one the things and see anything different. is this is as good as it gets. I had to deal with, in my own mind, best friend has been returned to her. 'Now that Sarah has woken, Lori's HI. HI! (LAUGHS) How're you doing, sugar?

UH... Good! Hello, hello! What's new about me today? Am I? make you old too, Sarah. Because that would AH. That's funny. (LAUGHS)

Did you notice I got new glasses? Sarah! (LAUGHS) Do you know why I have new glasses? Because I'm getting old. (LAUGHS) Huh? (LAUGHS) Yeah, I am. That's all right, I don't care. affected Sarah's body. '20 years in a coma have dramatically and her voice is slurred Her joints have seized have laid dormant for two decades.' as she is using muscles that into her room to stone-cold silence, After 20 years of walking her say, "Hi, Lori." to walk into her room and to hear that's here and with us today The Sarah that's - that was with us 20 years ago. is very much the same Sarah and she can answer you. She can talk to you And she can tell you when she's mad. she'll read every word of it. And if your write her a letter,

that inspire me. And those are the things You. Who's your best friend? Me. Who's my best friend? I love you so much. I know you do. a close friendship 'Sarah and Lori have that has lasted nearly 30 years. change forever on one tragic evening But it is a relationship that was to in the autumn of 1984.' and telling myself I remember looking up she was going to be OK, that it wasn't going to be that bad, she was going to be OK. needed to call her mom immediately. And my next thought process was I community when she started speaking 'Sarah Scantlin amazed the medical for 20 years. after being in a comatose state in January 2005, Since Sarah first started talking a slow and hard fought battle. improvement has been with extraordinary determination.' But one which she is fighting How're you doing? your nails done? (LAUGHS) Are you getting

You look really, really nice today.

she has prepared a surprise for him.' 'Today is her father's birthday and Very good. Bless your heart. (LAUGHS) that's all right. Oh, that's all right, has heard his daughter 'This is the first time that Jim sing Happy Birthday in 22 years.'

sang Happy Birthday to me, OK? Happy Birthday. I'll tell Mom you of looking after Sarah 'The financial strain They have sold the family home has left her parents almost bankrupt. the remainder of their possessions and live on a trailer park with

and memories of happier times.' in high school. There's Sarah in her glory, Her Farah Fawcett haircut. when she was probably five This is my favourite right here, (LAUGHS) and didn't want her picture taken. This was Sarah's sixteenth birthday. Those are the high school pictures. Her senior dance or senior prom. Life was a wonderful thing to her. I never, never, never saw her down. started college. 'In 1984, 18-year-old Sarah of her adult life.' It was the beginning was vibrant and she was funny. Sarah's attitude for life She was always there for everybody. And she had many, MANY friends. Sarah was selected 'Early in her first term, the Dragon Dolls.' for the college cheerleading squad, I immediately liked her a lot

friendly and outgoing. because she was vivacious, that just captured your heart. She was one of those people And I can tell that all the other girls liked her as well. 'On 22 September, the girls went out to celebrate.' LORI: We had gone out to the local bar called Tappers. We were just being college kids and partying and having a good time. As Tappers closed that night, um... we were walking out to the car and I was in front of Sarah... ..the next thing I can recall is me getting pulled down out of the way. TYRES SCREECH And I saw Sarah's body in the air, um...and knew immediately she'd been hit by a car and while she was still in the air, another car from the other direction hit her. TYRES SCREECH CARS CRASH

She lay...she lay lifeless in the middle of the road like a rag doll. AMBULANCE SIRENS And my next thought process was I needed to call her mom immediately. It was Lori and she was crying. And she said, "Mum, Sarah's been hurt." 'Sarah's injuries were so serious that she had to be airlifted to a specialist emergency hospital 40 miles away in Wichita.'

What do mean? I'm just... I'm stunned, I mean, I - I'm not in shock yet but I mean I'm just...

..I'm not comprehending anything. So I mean, I drive like a madman to Wichita. 'When they arrived at the Wichita Hospital, Jim and Betsy were informed that Sarah's condition was critical. The impact with the second car had fractured Sarah's skull causing massive brain injuries. The brain is the centre of all thought and emotion but it is incredibly fragile. The skull encases it to protect it. If the brain starts to swell due to bruising or bleeding then that protective casing can become a fatal trap. Sarah had massive haemorrhaging in her frontal lobe, which was forming into a blood clot the size of fist.' One very common problem following brain injury is swelling of the brain.

This can occur on its own or it can occur in association with other kinds of damage. For example, the development of blood clots and the problem with swelling within the skull is that there isn't anywhere for the brain to go.

The only way to relieve that pressure is by removing a portion of the skull and taking the clot out. 'To save Sarah's life, her doctors had to perform dangerous surgery.' I was starting to lose it and I started sobbing uncontrollably. I'm just scared to death. I was thinking, well maybe she...she died and they just haven't told us yet. And they were in surgery forever. And it's well up into the morning before they come out. 'After the surgery had finished, Betsy and Jim were allowed in to see their daughter. What they faced was every parents' worst nightmare.' MEDICAL EQUIPMENT BEEPING Our neurosurgeon sitting us down and saying, there's a good possibility that Sarah is going to physically survive. However, the brain was shattered and Sarah, as we knew her, was dead. 'The life saving surgery had caused massive brain damage, Sarah fell into a deep coma. Coma means the patient is not responding to their environment. We speak to them, they don't answer back, we pinch them they don't feel the pain, they don't do anything. 'Very little is know about this condition until recently. Even leading doctors understood almost nothing about what was happening in coma patients' brains.' Patients with brain injuries were kind of a mystic injury, didn't really know what was going on in there. And it was pretty much just wait and see whether they lived or died. What kind of function there was going to be if they did live. 'Coma is a transient state that usually lasts no more then six weeks. Patients who have not awoken by this time either die or pass into what is known as a vegetative state. Six weeks after her accident, this was the diagnosis given to Sarah. Vegetative state is a state of wakefulness without awareness. It's a state in which there's a sleep/wake cycle but there's no evidence of communication. 'To measure the level of consciousness in brain injured patients, doctors use a system called The Glasgow Coma Scale.' What the Glasgow Coma Scale invites you to do is to look at three aspects of someone's behaviour to try to come up with a measure of their conscious level. And the scale gives you a score out of 15. Patients with a score of eight or less are considered severe brain injuries. 'Tests on Sarah showed she was severely brain injured.' She had a Glasgow Coma Scale of five or less. Because even after she left the hospital, she wasn't responsive. She wouldn't respond to her environment. 'The longer a patient has been in a coma like state, the less their chance of recovery.' If you've been in a vegetative state just for a matter of week or two, your chances of regaining awareness are pretty good. If you have been in a vegetative state for a year, your chances of regaining awareness are very low, of the order of a few per cent at best. 'As the weeks turned to months, hopes that Sarah would ever wake up started to fade. She was transferred to the Golden Plains Nursing Home, where she would lay unresponsive for the next 20 years.

Sarah's best friend, Lori, moved on with her life. She moved away and started a family but she always felt responsible for the accident that caused Sarah's brain injuries.' Carried a lot of guilt with me, continued to have nightmares at least once a month for approximately 20 years. Why am I still here in the capacity in which I am here? And she's not? Why was the car directed at her versus myself? 'Sarah's doctors encouraged her friends and family to accept that she would be trapped in a vegetative state forever. Despite this, they tried desperately to wake her.' Pictures, constantly putting pictures in front of her and saying, "Do you remember this?" In hopes that she's going to say, "Oh yeah, I remember that." Or music. And again to no response.

'And efforts weren't just confined to her bedside. Her mother brought her here in a wheelchair, thinking if she saw the girls again and was a part of the atmosphere, maybe it would bring something back in her. When she came, I looked in her eyes and I thought she was gone. 'No matter what Sarah's parents or Lori tried, they failed to elicit a response from her. In deep sadness, we gave up and basically just said, Sarah is in such dire straits and so severely injured, it's foolish and self-defeating to drain herself any more hoping for the impossible. And it's unimaginable, the torment that it causes. Days became months, months became years. With somebody in a comatose state like that there's really no resolution, you're just hung there. 'Like Sleeping Beauty, Sarah slept on But there was little hope of a fairytale ending. If she ever woke, it was likely that the young woman friends and family had known was gone forever. Even patients who recover from relatively short comas can be affected for the rest of their lives. On the other side of the Atlantic, in England

lives 28 year-old Shahna Thwaites. She fell into a coma for 23 days following a car accident when she was 18 years old.' Here you go, Flopsy.

Oh, you want some as well, don't you? You want some? 'It can be traumatic for the families of brain injury victims

to see how they've been affected.

After Shahna woke up, her father Tristan struggled to accept the dramatic changes in his daughter.' The last year before Shahna's accident, she planned with her brother this photograph and this letter which they sent to us. It reads: "Thank you for an absolutely wonderful holiday, I can't wait till next year. Massive hugs and kisses. Love Shahna." The very next time she wrote to me was almost two years later. She has just about managed to write my name. Higgledy-piggedy at the top as you can see. What it is now, in the hand of probably a five- or six-year-old with sweet but very innocent little diagrams of messages on it. 'In June 1997, Shahna had spent the weekend at Glastonbury Music Festival.' I had been at Glastonbury with five friends and we were all into dance music. So most of the time we were in dance tents dancing. I had an absolutely brilliant time. 'After four days of partying, the friends were travelling back to their homes in Brighton. Suddenly, the car hit a crash barrier.

TYRES SCREECH AND CAR CRASHES The driver died instantaneously. And the four passengers were seriously injured.' AMBULANCE SIREN I went straight through the windscreen landing on the road on my head on that side at 90mph, fracturing my skull. 'Shahna fell into a deep coma. Her parents were told to expect the worst. There were a number of occasions where we were approached jointly and also individually about the possibility that we should let Shahna slip away. One particular occasion, after about three weeks, the senior doctor took me into his office at the side of the unit and I was then put under fairly intensive pressure. There's just no way you're going to give up. As far as I'm concerned, I'm prolonging her life by keeping her on this machine. And there's no way we're going to have it turned off. I should never forget how close we were. I...would...I don't know how I'd live with myself now if I had taken the other decision. 'After 23 days trapped in a coma, Shahna astounded everybody when she started to wake up.' I just wanted to cry. Oh, I was just so happy. You know, it was like...how can I... I was on cloud nine. We were told that if 100 people sustained the injuries that Shahna did, 90 would die, seven would live a very poor state of existence and three out of the 100 could achieve a recovery something approaching Shahna's.

First thing that I remember from after my accident was being wheeled into the house at home with no hair. I didn't care that I was in a wheelchair, I saw myself in the mirror with no hair - who stole my hair, where's my hair gone? 'Being allowed home was only the start of her recovery process.' It was like, going back to being a toddler again. I had to relearn absolutely everything. To walk, to...to even simple things like to dress, to use the bathroom. It was horrible. 'Like Sarah Scantlin, Shahna had severe injuries to the frontal lobe of her brain. The frontal lobe of the brain is really the personality centre. Patients who have frontal lobe injuries oftentimes they are very uninhibited, um...generally, you see their pre-injury personality sort of blossom. So if they were very outgoing, social, talkative person they become even more so. Her inhibitions weren't... you know, were just like a child's really. You know, and she used to have terrible tantrums if she couldn't get her own way.

I've thrown a few punches at my mum which I dread to talk about but... ..which I feel ashamed about and I don't like the fact that I did it. 'Shahna struggled to come to terms with her situation. She had a couple of suicide attempts. One day she slashed her legs with a razor and I just...you know, it was so frightening. I just didn't know how to help her any more. She most certainly was not the person, the daughter that we had before her accident.

'Shahna's parents didn't know if they would ever get back

the daughter they knew and loved. They realised Shahna, like all brain injured patients would need professional help to have any chance of making a full recovery. As Sarah Scantlin lay helpless at Golden Plains Nursing Home seasons came and went without any change in her condition.' I continued for years to go visit her and there's not a lot to say when somebody's not responding back to you though I would go to see her. And my visits would become shorter and fewer and farther between. 'Then after 17 years of silence, there was a dramatic development. Sarah began to scream. Friends and family were filled with hope. They believed these screams could be the start of meaningful communication.' Sarah finally got her voice back which I thought was going to be nice. However, Sarah just screamed. 'As her cries continued, the initial hope faded.' I hate that scream because I do not know what that scream means. Does that mean - don't go? Does it mean - I love you? Does it mean - don't come any more? What does it mean? I would have to tell her I'd have to make my journey back to Kansas City and she would scream to which I would hear her all the way down the halls of Golden Plains. Just broke my heart, it's heart-wrenching. It's heart-wrenching and you walk out and she's still sitting there with nobody. It's worse than the silence because now you can hear it in your head.

'Sarah's family was forced to accept that her screaming might continue forever but then after three years, something extraordinary happened. In February 2005, 20 years after Sarah Scantlin first fell into her coma, her parents received an urgent phone call. It was one of the nurses at Golden Plains. She said, "I got somebody here that wants to talk to you." And then I hear Sarah come. "Hi, Mom." And I said, "Sarah, is that you? "Yeah". "Well, what are you doing?" (LAUGHS) And I said, (LAUGHS) "Nothing". first starts to talk. It's like when your baby It's the same elation I had (LAUGHS) It really is. the first time I hear them say Mama. 'Betsy then immediately phoned Lori.' are you sitting down?" She said, "Lor, (LAUGHS) And I said, "No, do I need to be?" And she said, "Sarah's talking." of my head to the tips of my toes. And chills went from the tip gives me chills. And...just saying that again she's talking?" I said, "What do you mean on the phone and she's talking. She says, "She called me Ms Vain Sarah. (LAUGHS) And she asked for make-up", asked her for was to bring make-up. That's one of the first things she as quickly as I could. I knew that I needed to get there (ALL CLAP) for longer and started talking.' 'Nobody had been in a coma-like state for the Scantlin family, REPORTER: It's an amazing day for 20 years is now talking again. a daughter who's been silent is hearing this - After 20 years of silence Jim and Betsy Scantlin That is the most beautiful music could ever ask to hear. knows how well Sarah will ever get No one including her doctors really with her determination, but as her dad puts it - as far as she wants to. Sarah will carry it and resignation, After 20 years of despairing that you understand and it confirms she can speak well enough

of her environment. that she is cognisant So that was a huge ray of sun beaming through this dark cloud. what she witnessed 'For years Lori has been haunted by horrific accident. the night of Sarah's to seek their advice She is visiting Sarah's parents on how she can move on at long last. Lori! (LAUGHS) How is it going? My number two daughter. were warm enough LORI: The relationships that...you know, between my family and her family were Mom and Dad Scantlin my relationship with her folks that's how I know them. So good to see you. since this has all happened. LORI: You know, we've talked a lot about it again. You know, you do start thinking is...is...probably the heaviest To see that destroyed could go through. traumatic thing anyone I guess this is after And for whatever reason, one day, out there on purpose and I stop Sarah started talking again, I drive and I get out of the car and I said, "It's nice to visit the place where Sarah had her last best fun." in a lot more polished way. And I put that she was with her best friend. And it was really neat because you were with Sarah So, think of it in those terms - the last night Sarah was having fun. Hey. Hey! Who's here? (LAUGHS) You bet! Good to see my girl. How are you doing? Fine, good. was like a fairytale. 'Sarah's emergence after two decades by her recovery.' Doctor's were baffled in that most patients Sarah's case is certainly unique that are comatose for those 20 years with her severe head injury that she has had. don't have the recovery that we can't explain. She is doing things to my knowledge There's no medical reason, that Sarah should be talking today. for it and I don't...I... Um...I don't think there's an answer ..I can't give you that answer.

after each night I think Sarah laid there alone and tired of this." and "I am getting sick into this urge And put her entire being

blackness and this impossible maze. that I am going to get through this I'm going to find an exit. about all of this I think the intriguing part is nobody knows the answers. of Sarah's brain scans 'Closer examination

to talk even more extraordinary. makes her new found ability clot that threatened to kill her, When the surgeons removed the blood of the frontal lobe of her brain. they had to destroy part performed a couple of years ago This is a CT Scan of Sarah's brain is quite extensive damage which shows that there of the brain. to the front of the left side

This damage was likely to include Broca's area, at the front of the brain the language area for processing fluent speech. which is required to regain the power of speech 'Incredibly, Sarah was able of the brain destroyed. with this part in everybody's brain There is a large portion

or is what I call in backup mode. that is not being used and stimulated we all hope When a patient is challenged of the brain can pick up that those dormant areas some of those functions, what we all call neuroplasticity. new theory 'Neuroplasticity is a relatively of the brain to change. that refers to the ability allowed her to start talking again.' In Sarah's case, this may have relatively well preserved. The right-hand sphere seems some capacity for language. Right-hand sphere does often have that capacity might develop And it's possible that over time to allow speech to recover. 'Sarah is now a 41-year-old woman make-up that she did as a teenager.' but she still has the same love of What colours do you like to wear? What eye shadow colour do you like? Pink, yeah! For your blush? That colour all right? OK. Yeah. believes she is a teenager. 'The reality is that Sarah still from long-term comas People who have woken of the passage of time.' often have a distorted view and the year. Tell me your date of birth May 2nd, which year? Yeah. 1966? Tell me how old you are. Yeah. Is that 19? the time thing. I don't think she really grasped seems like yesterday to her. I think that in this 20 years She just looks in question like that you have four children? how is this possible a question there in her mind And you can tell there's quite put it together. that she just can't The idea that someone suddenly wakes up from a coma and is normal again is only what you see in television dramas.

You have your old memories from many years ago that are ingrained in your head but the recent new learning tends to be a struggle. 'Since she woke up, Sarah has shocked everybody by describing what she experienced during those 20 years.' Are you all fixed up now? Ooh, you look nice. Yeah. How could you hear? How was your hearing? But you couldn't see as well? Uh...no. 'Sarah also claims to remember events that happened while she was in her coma.'

Do you remember about when somebody says 9/11? what does that...what's that mean? It was a bad deal? What hit those buildings? A plane. Exactly. What did it do to a lot of people? Yeah, killed them. That's right. Yeah. 'Based on this apparent level of awareness, doctors now believe that Sarah was in what is called the minimally conscious state or MCS. The minimally conscious state is a state in which there is some early evidence of recovery, some attempt to communicate on the patient's part. Some evidence of purposeful action. Clearly there was a lot of sensory intake coming in, she just wasn't able to express outwardly what was going on. 'MCS is a recently described condition. There was no name for it when Sarah first fell into her coma. This formation of a new diagnosis was controversial. It raised the spectre that patients like Sarah had been written off too quickly. Can you imagine having a high-level or a level of awareness and not being able to express it? I said, to me it would be like being...you remember when you were a kid and you'd have a nightmare and you couldn't quite get out of it. 'After 20 years asleep, Sarah's emergence was not a fairytale ending. She is still suffering the effects of her severe injuries. Now her challenge is to see how far she can recover. 18 months after coming out of her three week coma, Shahna Thwaites had regained the power of speech and just started walking again. But she was still suffering from the effects of her brain injury.' I just didn't know how to cope with her any more, her frustrations and her anger - being like this. She couldn't understand, as she got better, why she couldn't lead a normal life but she was vulnerable and she really couldn't take care of herself. 'Her parents sent her to a specialist rehabilitation unit to help her overcome her disabilities. Today, Shahna is making the two-hour journey to Banstead, near London, England to visit the unit. It is the first time she's been back in seven years. Since I was at Banstead, I think I have improved a lot. I've done five years at college. Now qualified to hopefully get into university this autumn. And I can't wait to tell them that. I'm looking forward to going back to show off... (LAUGHS) I don't know, I don't want to sound big-headed. But I don't see why I shouldn't be because when someone's been through what I've been through and come as far as this, then you got a right to show it off. 'Shahna has arranged to meet the carers who were so instrumental in helping her recover from her brain injuries. Hello, Shahna. Hello! How are you? I'm fine, thank you. How are you? Very well, thank you. Hello, Shahna! Hello. How are you? Fine thanks. Lovely to see you. Most of the people who come here have been in a coma um...sometimes for days, sometimes for months. They all have some cognitive difficulties. So they might have disinhibition, they probably have personality shifts and typically they don't understand or accept that there's anything wrong with them. 'One of the main objectives of staying at the Brain unit is physical rehabilitation. Shahna had to overcome paralysis on her right side. I remember doing this with the balloon, using my right hand. I guess my right hand was just locked up like that. You made very good progress with that, though, didn't you? Because when you first came here, you didn't want to use your right hand. No I didn't. You did some work on balance, did you? Yes. Core balancing. Yes. And still now, ten years on, balancing on the right side

is like...one leg goes all wobbly and everything. So... ..still got to practise on that one. 'Rehabilitation also helps with any psychological damage.' They're having to come to terms with the fact that they are not the person they were.

So we have a lot of grieving for the person who was. As well as understanding the person who is. 'During her year at Bamstead, Shahna improved greatly. For the final two months, she lived independently in a cottage in the grounds of the unit. Hey. It's changed a bit. Kitchen. Kitchen's still exactly the same. Plus my bedroom, it was just here. I was in this room. Does it bring back lots of memories? Yeah, it certainly does. Shahna is a very good example of what rehabilitation after brain injury can do. She left here with much greater life expectationthan she had before. Brings back a lot of memories, both good and bad. But I wouldn't be where I am now if it wasn't for Banstead. So it's helped me come on this far. It's great to see how well she's progressed. It's absolutely fantastic. 'After a ten-year struggle, Shahna has made a remarkable recovery. She lives a full life with good friends and a boyfriend Gary, who she's been dating for two years. But she will always suffer from the effects of the injuries that put her in a coma.' The most difficult thing for me to accept has been the loss of my intelligence. I wanted to be a journalist, I wanted to go far, and now I would fail the exam straightaway. That is very hard to accept. 100% recovery, I couldn't possibly even envisage what that would be. If you mean 100% recovery to the person she was before, then, no, we won't experience that. But we have another daughter now, a different person. And she's 100% the person she is. 'Shahna took years of rehabilitation to recover from her 23-day coma. After 20 years in a minimally conscious state, Sarah Scantlin faces a much greater battle of recovery. Since Sarah Scantlin first emerged from her coma-like state, she has made extraordinary progress.'

# You are my... # My only... MUFFLED: Sun-shine. # You make me... MUFFLED: Ha-ppy. # When... MUFFLED: Skies are grey. # You'll never know... Dear. # How much I... I love you. # Please don't take... # MUFFLED: My sunshine away. That's right. Who's my sunshine? Me. 'Sarah's mind has broken free from her coma, but her body still suffers the effects of being unable to move for 20 years. Her nursing home provides physical therapy three times a week.'

There you go. 'Doctors have decided Sarah's first big goal is to feed herself again.' Of course that might not be as tasty as the apple sauce. 'Sarah is improving by small steps. But they will give her greater independence.' There you go. That's the one. How many? Two more, or three more? How many more? What colour is that you're picking up? She's a good patient. Very good patient. Because she is determined. Is that right, Sarah? Yeah. We have to keep on working with her. It's 20 years. You can't do it just within a few months. It'll take some time. And I think she is doing really good. Yeah. Yeah. That's good. 'Golden Plains is not a specialist unit. To help Sarah move forward, her parents are organising for her to attend a specialist brain injury centre, run by Dr Linda Ladesich.' When Sarah comes for her rehabilitation

she will have comprehensive therapies. We primarily use three disciplines - physical, occupational and speech therapy. Mostly comes down to hard work and therapy expertise, finding out what she can do, finding out ways to allow her to do as much as she can herself. As someone who is very close to her age, I could see where she was at 18 and where I was at 18, and how life-changing it was for someone who has so many goals and ambitions, and the family had dreams for her, and these last 20 years have not been what they prepared for. Spend some time outside. 'Sarah amazed the medical community when she defied all odds to find her voice again. She is determined to break new boundaries, and continue her fairytale recovery.' So, what are we gonna try to do next? What are some of your goals? You what? Walk. Oh, that's a big one. Well, all the more. I'd love to see that, Sarah. And it is certainly possible. Besides walking... Boy, that's a big one. That's great. What else do you wanna try to do? Give me another one. You wanna do what? Say it again. You wanna walk. All right. OK. But are there OTHER things?

Go home! Yeah. I don't know. Try to...you have to... (CHUCKLES) Oh! Sarah, I'm sure glad you're in my life. You're the best. I couldn't have found a better daughter. Sarah has proved to all of us that there's hope.

The mindset was that she would lay lifeless the rest of her life. And the fact that she can talk and can communicate is a miraculous story of hope. I thought she was condemned for 20 years, and now we've had this ray of sunlight and Sarah will take it as far as Sarah can take it. I'll guarantee you that. You've just surprised the world. And I'm betting a dollar you're gonna do more and more and more. There's nothing that Sarah can't do. Closed Captions by CSI