To make sure you never miss out on your favourite NEW stories, we're happy to send you some reminders

Click 'OK' then 'Allow' to enable notifications

Woman who was hours from death became the first person ever to survive rabies without a vaccine
Featured Image Credit: WBAY/Facebook/Jeanna Rabies-Survivor Giese

Woman who was hours from death became the first person ever to survive rabies without a vaccine

She was just a teenager when she contracted the deadly virus

A woman who was mere hours from death became the first person ever to survive rabies without a vaccine.

Northeast Wisconsin resident, Jeanna Giese, has gone down in history as the medical anomaly that shocked healthcare professionals all over.

Giese, a Fond du Lac native, holds an impressive title of the first person in the world to survive the deadly disease at just 15 years old back in 2004. Take a look:

"I am the first person in the world to survive rabies without the vaccination," the woman told WBAY.

Still in high school at the time, Giese was bitten by a bat and unknowingly contracted rabies.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC): "Rabies is a preventable viral disease most often transmitted through the bite of a rabid animal.

"The rabies virus infects the central nervous system of mammals, ultimately causing disease in the brain and death."

As she didn't know she contracted the virus, Giese never received the vital life-saving vaccine treatment.

Just a matter of weeks later, the teenager was hospitalized with doctors declaring she was just a matter of hours away from death.

Doctors put the teenager in a coma to let her 'own body fight it off'.
NBC 26

Speaking of that moment, Giese said: "The doctors came up with a radical treatment to put me in a coma and just let my own body fight it off."

The woman, now 34, told NBC 26: "Basically, they told my parents, 'You can let her die here at the hospital or you can take her home and let her die or we can try this experiment'.

"'We don't know if it's gonna work, but we want to put her in a coma'."

After finally waking up from the medically-induced coma, Giese said she was 'basically a 15-year-old newborn'.

"I couldn't talk, I couldn't move my arms, I couldn't walk, couldn't sit up on my own," she recalled.

Now, after nearly two decades have passed, the woman has gone on to live a happy and healthy life.

Giese was just 15 when she contracted the deadly virus.
NBC 26

She has three children, a husband, a beautiful house in the suburbs and got a job at the Fond du Lac Children’s Museum.

Giese told the outlet her secret to a miraculous recovery lay from her resilience and willpower.

"There was you know, many times when I wanted to give up and just stop trying," she said.

"I don't know what's going to happen another in 10 years, another 20 years, but I'm excited to see."

Giese has since used her story to spread awareness about rabies - educating people, especially young children, about the virus, how it’s contracted, what it does to the body and how it can be treated.

"My main mission is just kind of to get the word out there and kind of get them more inquisitive about it and learning and learning how to stay safe around animals," she told WBAY.

Topics: US News, Health, Life, Animals