We spoke to the out of hours service – a doctor called back within minutes and told us to take her to hospital.
That night she had a tube up her nose to drain her stomach and a cannula in her tiny hand. The hours turned into days, it was my worst nightmare. They thought she had a problem with her bowel but eventually on the Tuesday she had a lumbar puncture. I remember seeing the nurse after the procedure, she was almost in tears. Later when they told us she had viral meningitis, I just held her and cried, thinking my precious baby was going to die.
I was emotionally and physically drained. Katie would feed for hours while they infused her antibiotics and I would set an alarm to wake me every three hours at night so that she didn’t become dehydrated. I don’t remember half of the things the doctors said to me, it was all a blur.
We were in hospital for a week and she was treated with antibiotics at home and in hospital for another two weeks after. She had around 10 cannulas and every time they had to replace it, it took two of us to hold her down, she has spirit that’s for sure!
She has had follow-up appointments with a specialist and also with audiology.
We have just celebrated her first birthday and it is the anniversary of her illness. She recently had an eye infection which tested positive for Hib bacteria; thankfully this was treated with antibiotics and she seems to have fully recovered.
Currently Katie is unable to hear low level sounds but she has more hearing tests coming up and we hope for an improvement in the future.
When I think back to that time, it is almost like it never happened, like a bad dream. The hospital staff were amazing and although my baby is growing up and in my eyes has beaten this hideous disease I cannot help but think how different our lives could have been if we had waited before taking her to hospital, those few hours could have cost Katie her life.