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Monday 26 September 2016

TV sports presenter Webster 'fights for survival' after malaria infection

Ryan Wilkinson

Published 19/08/2016 | 02:30

Charlie Webster in hospital in Rio. Photo: PA
Charlie Webster in hospital in Rio. Photo: PA

Television sports presenter Charlie Webster is "fighting for survival" in a Rio hospital after she contracted a rare strain of malaria.

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The 33-year-old became unwell on August 6 after watching the Olympic opening ceremony, having arrived in Rio a few days before. Doctors thought she was dehydrated following the gruelling six-week Ride to Rio challenge.

However, her condition deteriorated after she developed a severe complication from a bacterial infection.

Her family travelled from the UK to be at her bedside where she was able to speak to them after she came out of an induced coma last night.

She is being kept on dialysis as her kidneys are not responding to treatment and is being supported by a respirator.

Her mother said: "Charlotte knows she nearly died. She mouthed to me earlier, 'look at all the machines keeping me alive'.

Charlie Webster with 'Downton Abbey' star Allen Leech. Photo: PA
Charlie Webster with 'Downton Abbey' star Allen Leech. Photo: PA

"Charlotte is really strong but as the doctors keep reminding me, everyone heals differently. "It's been the worst imaginable time. We have been beside ourselves with worry but the fact Charlotte is now conscious is amazing. "

Ms Webster, a former Sky and ITV sports presenter, had cycled 1,600 miles from Recife in the north-east of Brazil to Rio de Janeiro in 39 days with the widower of breast cancer fundraiser Jane Tomlinson.

Ms Webster, who once dated 'Downton Abbey' Irish star Allen Leech, set off on the Ride to Rio challenge on June 27,

Irish Independent

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