Snizhana Tisyeyeva has returned home after spending weeks in hospital following a car accident in Kiev that also involved fellow Ukrainian biathlete Artem Tyshchenko ©IBU

Snizhana Tisyeyeva has returned home after spending weeks in hospital following a car accident in Kiev that also involved fellow Ukrainian biathlete Artem Tyshchenko.

Tisyeyeva spent seven days in intensive care after the incident, which happened on May 3 around 3am when a car being driven by Tyshchenko hit a bump and went out of control.

The road was mostly empty, except for two 23-year-old men who were passing just as the accident occurred.

They managed to pull the unconscious Tisyeyeva and Tyshchenko from the car just a few minutes before it was engulfed in flames.

The car was a total loss along with all the athletes' belongings and personal documents.

The two men put the athletes in their car and called an ambulance which took them to the district hospital, where a team doctor arrived shortly afterwards.

Tyshchenko was diagnosed with a concussion and minor burns, however, the 20-year-old Tisyeyeva was severely injured with burns on 10 per cent of her body and multiple facial traumas.

The athletes were quickly moved to Kiev's regional hospital where Tisyeyeva immediately underwent a six-hour operation.

The Ukrainian Biathlon Federation assumed the major expenses, paying for Tisyeyeva's operations and her stay in the intensive care unit.

"We were very lucky the federation took care about us, because among other things, it was a holiday period and without a special reason no one would have moved us to another hospital," said Tisyeyeva.

"The doctor in Kiev said a delay of one more day, and it would be no longer possible to correct the injuries to my face.

"At the hospital, I immediately had surgery for the skin grafts on the loins, as well as on the face.

"My nose was broken into small pieces and my lips were torn from my face."

Artem Tyshchenko tested positive for meldonium in January
Artem Tyshchenko tested positive for meldonium in January ©IBU

Among those to visit Tisyeyeva at the hospital was Ukraine’s national biathlon team captain Olena Pidhrushna, a 4x6 kilometres relay gold medallist at the Sochi 2014 Olympic Games. 

Pidhrushna actively helped her compatriot, raising money for her treatment and providing moral support.

Tisyeyeva, who last season registered sixth and eighth place finishes in International Biathlon Union (IBU) Junior Cup sprints, is now on the road to recovery. 

"I am already at home, but unfortunately it is too early exercising," said Tisyeyeva.

"I need to remain in bed constantly, because the skin on my feet is still thin and it will take time to recover.

"Of course, doing nothing is very difficult, so I try to walk a little around the house.

"My mom bought me an expander so I can do some simple exercises.

"When everything starts to heal, I can start training more.

"Hopefully, in a month and a half I will be able to exercise more actively."

In April, Tyshchenko had a provisional suspension lifted after testing positive for meldonium at an IBU Cup event hosted by Arber in Germany in January. 

It came after the World Anti-Doping Agency admitted there were question marks on how long meldonium - which has only been banned since January 1 - stays in the body.

The IBU also lifted a suspension handed to Russia's Eduard Latypov, also for meldonium use.