Alisha Ramirez, known by Profe to her students in Menomonie, came down with symptoms normally associated with the flu just before Halloween.
"Treated it with over the counter drugs I've taken before," Ramirez said.
After taking the drugs, ramirez didn't feel better, it was much the opposite.
"I got sicker and sicker and my eyes got puffy like pink eye," Ramirez said.
After a visit to urgent care, Ramirez came home and took a nap on her couch at home. When she woke up she had blisters on her face filled with fluid that formed from the inside. Her next visit was to the burn unit at Regents Hospital in Saint Paul.
"I was in the hospital from November 1 to December 2 for five weeks. Three of those I was on life support and a ventilator."
One of her sinuses closed completely, requiring surgery to fix along with damage done to her right eye.
Ramirez was diagnosed with Stevens Johnson Syndrome caused by an allergic reaction to medication or a virus.
It affects 2 in one million people and can be deadly.
"It's harder for me to see her go through this than go through it myself," Ramirez's husband Juan said.
Alisha's back at home and regaining strength on a daily basis...And doesn't discount the love of her husband Juan, who was by her side everyday in the hospital.
"I would not be here if not for him. He's one of the reasons I wanted to stick around," Alisha said.
"It's great to see how much of a fighter she is. It's helped me cope with it," Juan said.
Both Ramirez's are teachers in the Menomine area and admit they're taken aback by the support from the community and a benefit at the high school Saturday to help pay for medical bills.
"It's overwhelming that they care about not only as a teacher, but as a person," Alisha said.
Whenever Alisha wakes up, she and Juan can see the color slowly returning to her face and she still takes eye drops and antibiotics to help, but if all goes well Profe Ramirez hopes to return to class, doing what she loves in a couple of weeks.
The high school will be holding a benefit with silent auctions and raffles on items such as a big screen TV, gift certificates and numerous other donations from people and businesses in the community.
"They do everything they can for us. We wanted to give back to them," student Ali Ramaeker said.
The benefit will be held this Saturday, in the Menomonie High School cafeteria from 5 to 8:30 p.m.
All proceeds will go to the Ramirez family to help cover medical expenses.
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