Typically when people think about debt that overwhelms an individual, they think about credit card debt or a mortgage that is too much for the person to handle. Student debt is another common reason for someone to suffer serious debt, but of course that is a non-dischargeable debt that causes complications during bankruptcy proceedings.
There is another form of debt that causes a lot of problems for people, though it doesn't get the attention it necessarily deserves: medical debt. In many situations where medical debt becomes such a serious problem that a bankruptcy is required, the individual suffers medical emergency that never could have been predicted.
These situations happen all the time, unfortunately. One of the common reactions that the sufferer has is to avoid the issue of their medical debt, or to compound the problem by blaming themselves for getting into this situation. But this isn't the right way to address the situation, or to think about it. Medical emergencies are simply unlucky parts of life, and the person living through it needs to take concrete steps after the act to better himself or herself, and to combat any medical debt problems they may have.
Remember that medical institutions are all about their bottom lines, and that means that they aren't likely to be open to negotiating your debt. They will simply pass it along to a collector. In these situations, it is best to file for bankruptcy so that you can discharge the debt and move on with your life.