Our beautiful son Niall was diagnosed with Kawasaki Disease on the 28th April, after being ill for nearly eight days. During the eight days before, unfortunately he was twice diagnosed as having a viral infection and once as Scarlett Fever before the correct diagnosis of Kawasaki Disease was made. After diagnosis Niall was sent straight to Antrim Area Hospital where we spent four nights and in this time he received the vital Immunoglobulin treatment via IV to help treat the infection. After this we were sent to the Royal Children's Hospital in Belfast for an Echocardiogram scan, which resulted in the scary discovery that the Kawasaki Disease had caused two large Coronary Artery Aneurysms on Niall's heart. We then had to spend the next nine nights in the Clark Clinic in the Royal Hospital and receive another round of the Immunoglobulin IV and other medication before he was finally discharged on 11th May.
Niall has made great improvement since first becoming sick and his progress is still being monitored and reviewed by the amazing and very thorough Dr Sands at the Clark Clinic who has overseen his recovery so far. Niall is a very brave boy and has taken the ordeal in his stride. However he is still on a combination of Aspirin, Lansoprazole and Warfarin and he requires his INR (blood thinness) tested weekly and medicines reviewed.
Awareness of Kawasaki Disease is low (I had never heard of it before Niall got it) and when the disease is not diagnosed early (within 5-7 days) affected children have a significantly increased chance of heart damage. Societi, the UK Kawasaki Disease Foundation is a fantastic charity that is trying to raise awareness across GP's and the medical profession to help protect children's hearts.
During September I will be raising awareness and funds for Societi by completing 5K a day. For someone as unfit as me, this will definitely be a challenge, but I am looking forward to raising funds and awareness for such a great charity!
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