‘I’m the bionic MP’: Craig Mackinlay says he’s ‘lucky to be alive’ as he reveals he lost both feet and hands to sepsis

21 May 2024, 21:56 | Updated: 21 May 2024, 23:44

Craig Mackinlay has said he wants to be known as the first 'bionic MP' after losing both his arms and legs to sepsis.
Craig Mackinlay has said he wants to be known as the first 'bionic MP' after losing both his arms and legs to sepsis. Picture: Alamy

By Jenny Medlicott

Conservative MP Craig Mackinlay has revealed he had to have both his hands and feet amputated after suffering from sepsis as he said he’s “lucky to be alive".

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The Tory MP for South Thanet, 57, was admitted to hospital last September with at-the-time suspected sepsis and was placed in an induced coma.

He suffered multiple organ failure and started to turn blue as the infection began to take hold.

After 16 days in a coma, he woke up to find his limbs completely blackened due to blood clots and lack of circulation caused by his illness.

They were “like plastic…you could almost knock them...they were black, desiccating, clenched,” Mr Mackinlay said of his limbs after he woke up.

In a video taken in November from his bed in St Thomas’ hospital, he said: “The reality is that I probably shouldn't have survived this far”.

Doctors told the Tory MP that he was the sickest patient they had seen all year, and his wife Kati was told her husband’s chances of survival were 5% at best.

Doctors were able to save above his elbows and knee but he had all four limbs amputated in December.

The night before his limbs were amputated, Mr Macklinay recorded a farewell video to his arms and legs.

Staring into the camera, he said: “The grim reaper has let me survive…but he’s taken his payment in four of my limbs," The Times reports.

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Mr Mackinlay has now revealed he wants to be known as the first “bionic MP” after he was fitted with prosthetic legs and hands.

It comes as he's set to return to Parliament for the first time since his illness on Monday.

“I am lucky,” he said. “I’ve got my knees and my elbows, which makes a big difference.”

His wife Kati told The Times: “They told me to prepare for the worst.

“But I never left the hospital saying goodbye. I didn’t want to accept it.”

On February 28, Mr Mackinlay took his first 20 unaided steps after surgery - a major milestone following what he described as a sombre Christmas.

While he remains generally positive, he told the BBC he does have “low moments”.

"You do get a little one every morning because you're in the land of nod having a nice dream, and then you wake up and it's 'I haven't got any hands'.

"That is the realisation every morning.

"It's very easy to say - and I do try and stick to it - there's not much point moaning and complaining or getting down about the things you can't do.

"You've got to be cheerful and positive about things you can do and I find every day there's something new that I can do.

"None of this would be possible without my wife… I wouldn't be where I am today without her.”

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