Cure at Lourdes:

9th November 2005
Another Cure Recognised as a Miracle

On 9th November 2005, an Italian, Anna Santaniello, has been declared the 67th person to be miraculously cured in Lourdes. At the age of 41, she was cured after being bathed in the water of Lourdes on 19th August 1952 while on pilgrimage.

Born in 1912, Anna Santaniello developed severe heart disease following acute rheumatic arthritis. She presented with severe and persistent dyspnoea (breathlessness), or Bouillaud`s Disease, which made it difficult for her to speak and impossible for her to walk, with severe asthma attacks, cyanosis of her face and lips and bilateral lower limb oedema. On 16th August 1952, Anna Santaniello was brought on pilgrimage to Lourdes by the Italian organisation, UNITALSI. She made the journey to Lourdes on a stretcher. She stayed in the old Accueil Notre-Dame under constant care. On 19th August she was taken to the Baths on a stretcher. She returned unaided. The same evening she took part in the Torchlight Marian Procession.

On 20th august 1952, Anna Santaniello was examined by several doctors of the UNITALSI pilgrimage. An official report was made: Pulse is 90, regular rhythm, the cyanosis and dyspnoea have disappeared, the oedema has receded, the patient can walk without difficulty, and she can sleep peacefully, she has recovered her normal appetite, which she had lost for a long time. On her return from Lourdes Anna Santaniello was able to descend unaided from the train a Genoa. From there she went to he parents who lived in Turin. On 29th August she was examined by two doctors who noted the cure.

On 10th August 1953, Anna Santaniello was examined by the Medical Bureau of the Sanctuary of Our Lady of Lourdes. A new enquiry was begun because of the divergent diagnosis of the two doctors who were caring for her: mitral valve stenosis or mitral valve regurgitation. A critical examination of the documentation showed that the disagreement was over the use of words (today we speak of “mitral disease”)

On 18th July 1960, she came to Lourdes as a nurse and again visited the Medical Bureau of the Sanctuary. On 24th July 1962, after another examination, the doctors present in the Medical bureau decided to send the file to the International Medical Committee of Lourdes. On 11th April 1964, Dr. Pierre Merle, a cardiologist from Montpellier presented the case to the Committee. On 3rd May they confirmed that this was an extraordinary cure. The file was then forwarded, as is the norm, to the Archdiocese of Salerne (Italy) where Anna Santaniello lived. However, in view of the divergent diagnosis of the illness, the Canonical Commission of the Archdiocese of Salerne declared that the study of the cure could not be “concluded as a miracle nor could they deny it.”

On 23rd and 24th October 2004, in the course of a meeting organised by INITALSI in Benevento, Dr. Patrick Theillier, the present medical officer for the Medical Bureau, raised the case of Anna Santaniello. After a new Cardiology report, Archbishop Gerardo Pierro of Salerne officially recognised the miraculous cure of Anna Santaniello on 21st. September 2005. She continues to be in good health at 93 years of age.

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