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  1. ITV Report

Pauline Cafferkey describes pain of battling Ebola inside hospital isolation tent

Pauline Cafferkey has described the loneliness of battling Ebola while alone and in agony in a hospital isolation tent.

Speaking exclusively to ITV News and the Tonight programme, the nurse said she would cry during the night "to the point that I wanted to scream".

After Pauline beat Ebola once following her initial diagnosis in December 2014, the virus resurfaced last year, triggering meningitis.

As a result, the 40-year-old spent nearly three weeks in the isolation tent at the Royal Free Hospital in London, often in horrendous pain.

Pauline says she used to cry inside the lonely tent. Credit: ITV News

She told the Tonight programme: "The night times were the worst for me, they were horrible.

"I would just cry at night time, I would just cry in the tent.

"I was just crying so much to the point that I wanted to scream.

"I don't know if I was scared of dying or just sheer frustration of being there and wanting out."

Pauline meeting the medical staff who helped save her life. Credit: Handout

But Pauline says she found comfort in the support of her fellow nurses.

"The nurses were great," she said. "They would just come and sit with me and be with me and talk to me."

Now recovered, Pauline has returned to the Royal Free Hospital, allowing Tonight to film her reunion with the team that treated her and the moment she came face-to-face with the tent once more.

Viewing it again at the hospital, she said: "I can't say I'm overwhelmed, I just know that I never want to go back in there again."

Asked what her first feeling was when she finally got out of the tent after her ordeal, Pauline said: "Just absolute relief."

This home video shows the moment Pauline gets out of the isolation tent after she had recovered.

More: I don't regret going to Sierra Leone, writes Pauline Cafferkey

You can watch more of Pauline's story on the Tonight programme.

  • Pauline's Story - Living with Ebola: Tonight will be broadcast on Thursday at 7.30pm on ITV