Tayside and Central Scotland

Sepsis student Amy's artful fight back

Amy Crawford Image copyright Dundee University
Image caption Amy Crawford was unable to stand by the time she reached the out-of-hours doctor service

A Dundee University art student will unveil her degree show work six weeks after she almost died from sepsis.

Amy Crawford, 22, from Carnoustie, was unable to stand by the time she arrived at the out-of-hours doctor service in Dundee at the start of April.

Ninewells Hospital surgeons performed a life-saving operation to remove a large septic abscess before it ruptured.

Amy said she would have been "devastated" to miss her degree show.

She said: "I was in so much pain when I got to hospital that I couldn't think of anything else.

"Even the ambulance staff were panicking when my pulse rate increased to 146 beats per minute, so I knew how serious it was.

"It was as I was lying waiting for my operation that I had a brief moment when I started thinking that I wouldn't get to my degree show and I would have wasted all that time and effort."


Amy is one of almost 350 students exhibiting at the university's Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art and Design degree show.

She said that after "fantastic" support from tutors and university staff, she started to come in two days a week and "built up from there".

Amy said: "April was pretty much a write-off for me.

"I was bed-bound for weeks, so when I eventually was able to get up my muscles had wasted.

"I was so weak but I knew I had to get in to university to finish my work.

"I probably shouldn't have come in as much as I did but I had put so much into this that I was determined that sepsis wasn't going to ruin it for me."

Amy's exhibit is inspired by her experiences running art workshops for adults with dementia.

She said the work aspires to "inject humanity into the issue" by seeing past the disease itself.

Amy said: "If I had one piece of advice for art students it is to be as organised as possible because you never know what's round the corner."

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