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ASHEVILLE, NC - FEBRUARY 10: Serena Williams of Team USA, bottom left, along with her husband Alexis Ohanian and their daughter Alexis Olympia, center, watch the action during the first round of the 2018 Fed Cup at US Cellular Center on February 10, 2018 in Asheville, North Carolina.

Serena Williams Details Near-Death Experience After Giving Birth

Serena Williams has been frank that things got pretty scary for her medically shortly after giving birth to her firstborn baby, little Alexis Olympia.

But now, the tennis champ is opening up about her harrowing experience, which includes blood clots, popped stitches, emergency surgery — all just days after bringing new life into the world. As she wrote in an op-ed piece for CNN:

It began with a pulmonary embolism, which is a condition in which one or more arteries in the lungs becomes blocked by a blood clot. Because of my medical history with this problem, I live in fear of this situation. So, when I fell short of breath, I didn’t wait a second to alert the nurses.

This sparked a slew of health complications that I am lucky to have survived. First my C-section wound popped open due to the intense coughing I endured as a result of the embolism. I returned to surgery, where the doctors found a large hematoma, a swelling of clotted blood, in my abdomen. And then I returned to the operating room for a procedure that prevents clots from traveling to my lungs. When I finally made it home to my family, I had to spend the first six weeks of motherhood in bed.

Serena says the experience opened her eyes to what women all over the world without access to top-tier medical care go through, and called for action to lower infant mortality rates and provide adequate care to expectant mothers all over.

We’re glad she and the baby are a-okay now.



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