AKRON, Ohio — Emma Pfouts, the 16-year-old Norton cheerleader who fell severely ill after suffering an asthma attack at her school’s homecoming dance, is continuing to make significant progress and “has her personality back,” her mother, Christina Weigand, told the Akron Beacon Journal, a News 5 media partner.
On Oct. 19, 2019, Emma was at the homecoming dance when she started struggling to breathe. A police officer watched as Emma walked to her car to grab her asthma inhaler, but as she returned to the building, the officer noticed the teen was in serious trouble. She never made it back inside. Emma was placed in a medically-induced coma and soon after waking up began swallowing, yawning and moving her eyes, as well as moving her hand.
Less than three months after the incident, Emma is making strides in her recovery, and a recent MRI shows that her brain is healing, according to the ABJ report. Emma has been able to show emotion -- laughing, smiling and shrugging. She can move her legs, tongue, mouth and head on command and has been communicating with her eyes. Remarkably, Emma has also been starting to communicate by mouthing words, although she has not spoken any words out loud, the report said.
On Tuesday, because of all the progress she’s made to date, Emma will begin intense therapy at Akron Children's Hospital from morning to afternoon, which her mother hopes will give her the opportunity for a tentative discharge date, according to the report.