‘I was very close to exit’

The Sunday Telegraph (Sydney) - - NEWS -

VET­ERAN broad­caster Alan Jones was “very close to the exit” af­ter go­ing into sep­tic shock, he has re­vealed.

The 76-year-old ra­dio le­gend spent the week in the in­ten­sive care unit at St Vin­cent’s Pri­vate Hos­pi­tal af­ter de­vel­op­ing a new and vir­u­lent in­fec­tion, ru­moured to be sep­ti­caemia.

Doc­tors told Jones he could have died af­ter his blood pres­sure dropped dan­ger­ously and he had to be rushed to hos­pi­tal.

“Alan has been told he is lucky to be alive af­ter en­dur­ing se­ri­ous pain and de­lay­ing treat­ment for what quickly be­came a se­ri­ous in­fec­tion,” a close friend said.

Sources close to Jones said the in­fec­tion be­gan in his uri­nary tract and sep­sis quickly set in af­ter the 2GB breakfast host de­cided not to in­con­ve­nience one of his doc­tors, who was away on leave.

Adam Lang, chief op­er­at­ing of­fi­cer of Mac­quarie Me­dia, con­firmed Jones re­mains in hos­pi­tal this week­end and will be ab­sent from his chair at 2GB for at least an­other week.

“He’s out of ICU but it may be an­other week be­fore he re­turns to work,” Lang said. “He’s try­ing to fol­low doc­tors’ or­ders and rest.”

Wor­ried friends said Jones, who lost 7kg last year in prepa­ra­tion for back surgery, is “un­recog­nis­able” in his present state.

He has in­formed his staff he is “ex­hausted” af­ter bat­tling the lifethreat­en­ing in­fec­tion for a week.

“I feel like I’ve gone 15 rounds with Ali,” he said in cor­re­spon­dence to col­leagues.

“The sep­sis has taken over and gone through my whole body.”

Four days af­ter be­ing ad­mit­ted to hos­pi­tal he was still bat­tling fever and re­quir­ing heavy an­tibi­otic treat­ment to kill what has dis­mis­sively been de­scribed on his new so­cial me­dia ac­count as a “nasty bug’’.

Jones has as­sured friends the in­fec­tion is un­re­lated to a se­ries of blood clots he de­vel­oped in his limbs last month fol­low­ing four sur­gi­cal pro­ce­dures ear­lier on back and neck prob­lems.

His ab­sence from the breakfast ra­dio shift hurt 2GB’s rat­ings for the first part of the year.

Af­ter ini­tially try­ing Chris Smith as a re­place­ment, the sta­tion switched Ray Hadley onto a mam­moth morn­ing shift, which went from 5.30am to mid­day.

How­ever, Jones’ re­turn to the chair saw rat­ings re­bound.

Alan Jones re­cov­er­ing in St Vin­cent’s.

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