$10,000 raised online here to help Irish woman in coma

SINGAPORE - Around $10,000 has been raised locally to help Irish national Lisa Orsi, who collapsed while on a trekking holiday in Indonesia.

The 22-year-old was working at Bright Vision Hospital in Hougang as a physiotherapist, and she had been in Singapore for a year before the accident.

She lost consciousness last Friday while hiking up a volcano in Indonesia, and was first warded at a hospital there, according to The Belfast Telegraph, a Northern Irish newspaper.

She was diagnosed as having suffered severe brain damage from hypoxia, or a lack of oxygen, and was moved to the Singapore General Hospital on Wednesday.

According to a Facebook post by her mother, Mrs Sharon Orsi, she has severe altitude sickness and is undergoing various medical tests.

"Thank you all for your support, encouragement and beautiful words," said Mrs Orsi.

"They are giving our family great strength and the will to keep going."

Altitude sickness is typically caused by the low oxygen levels found at altitudes above 3,000m. It is not uncommon, even among trekkers who are very fit.

The condition is characterised by headaches and nausea but, in severe cases, sufferers can lose consciousness.

An online fund-raiser to help pay for Ms Orsi's medical expenses was set up by the Singapore Gaelic Lions, an athletic association to which she belongs.

The club has also raised around £19,800 (S$41,500) on a separate site that cannot be used by those residing in Singapore.

The call for donations was shared by the Singapore Physiotherapy Association, of which Ms Orsi is also a member.

"She's really kind and loving and funny, and she's full of energy," said Ms Sinead Carr, who is a childhood friend of Ms Orsi and works as a speech therapist in Singapore.

"Her heart is as golden as her hair, and she's a real live wire."

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