Science and Tech


Kentucky woman loses all of her limbs after kidney stone gets infected

Cindy Mullins, a 41-year-old married mother of two, has lost her arms and legs in what she has described as a "perfect storm.”
Cindy Mullins pictured right with her two kids and husband
Posted at 1:57 PM, Dec 31, 2023

A Kentucky woman said she is just happy to be alive after a kidney stone turned into an infection that would lead to a quadruple amputation. 

"I've lost my legs from the knees down bilaterally and I'm going to lose my arms probably below the elbow bilaterally," Cindy Mullins told Scripps News Lexington. "The doctor I used to work with, he kind of was like, 'this is what they had to do to save your life this is what's happened.'"

Mullins, a 41-year-old mother of two, has lost her arms and legs in what she has described as a "perfect storm.” After getting treatment for a kidney stone, it got infected and she became septic.

She told Scripps News Lexington that after initially rushing to Fort Logan Hospital in Stanford, Kentucky, she was taken by ambulance to U.K. Hospital in Lexington.

After being sedated for days, Mullins woke up to the news she'd be losing all of her limbs.

The long-time nurse was surprisingly calm when everything was explained to her. She said she would take this losing her limbs over losing her life. 

"I just said these are the cards I've been dealt and these are the hands I'm going to play," Mullins said.

"I'm just so happy to be alive. I get to see my kids. I get to see my family. I get to have my time with my husband. Those are minor things at this point."

Mullins has been with her husband since she was 17 years old. Family is everything to her, and she's learning her kin may stretch beyond just her last name.

An outcry of support came from her community as her unfortunate story spread. Over the last few weeks, over $100,000 has been donated to help the family get through this difficult time, Scripps News Lexington reported.

"At one time I think they told 40 people were in the waiting room here. The calls and the texts, the prayers and the things people have sent. The little words of encouragement," Mullins said. "I just can't fathom that people are doing things like that for me."

As she prepares for rehab, physical therapy, prosthetics and so many changes to her daily life, she hopes her story can inspire others.

"Slow down. Appreciate the things around you, especially your family. It's okay to let people take care of you," Mullins said. "If one person from this can see God from all this, that made it all worth it."