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Family keeping vigil at brain-op mum's bedside

THE FAMILY of a Dublin mum who was flown home from Tenerife is keeping vigil at her bedside today after a vital operation.

Fiona Fitzgerald suffered a brain haemorrhage while on holiday in Spain with a friend and the mum-of-one was critically ill in a Tenerife hospital for four weeks.

She had travelled to Los Cristianos for a last-minute break with her friend Patricia Curran for a week and she was due to come back home on Saturday, June 5, when she suffered the massive brain bleed.

Fiona was rushed to hospital and was kept in intensive care there.

Her family said they were told that there were no intensive care beds available here to treat her.

But after her sister Eimear Dunne and son Chris went public with her plight on Joe Duffy and in the Herald, Fiona (53) was brought home to Tallaght Hospital.

Eimear and Chris flew home shortly afterwards.

Now the Templeogue mum has been transferred to Beaumont Hospital, where she is being seen by some of the country's top brain experts.

Fiona, who works in the Coombe Hospital, brightened up upon her return home and doctors believed that Irish voices around her helped her.

However, she has since contracted a high temperature and appears to be drowsy.

Doctors have fitted a stent in a delicate procedure, which they hope will improve her condition.

"She is still a long way to go," Eimear said.

However, Eimear said that doctors believe there is severe damage because of the way she's holding herself.

"It will be a while before we know what quality of life she will have," she added.

The family have paid tribute to the specialist care and treatment provided to Fiona in Tenerife, Tallaght and Beaumont hospitals.

"She went through all of the tests again when she came home and all of the nurses and doctors have been brilliant," Eimear said.