Earlier this year, 12-year-old Kate was admitted to the Paediatric Intensive Care Unit at Bristol Children’s Hospital after she was diagnosed with E. coli and HUS, a severe complication from the infection. This is her story, in her own words.
“I first started to feel ill around a week before I went in hospital. I had been having diarrhoea and vomiting before I went to have a blood test at my local doctors. I felt so dizzy I could hardly walk straight. Anyway, my bloods came back and my creatinine was over 1500. Then I went to Yeovil Hospital and I was really scared because I didn’t know what was going on. In the hospital, the doctors took some more blood and they decided I needed to go to the Paediatric Intensive Care Unit (PICU) at Bristol Children’s Hospital. In the Ambulance I felt scared and worried but they gave me a little bear to keep me company (which I called Collin).
It turned out I had E. coli which developed into HUS. I was in PICU for 5 days and then moved to the renal ward. I didn’t only have HUS but my lung collapsed and my heart fluttered during the anaesthetic I had when doctors were putting a line in my neck. Afterwards I also had a spasm in my throat, which made me very frightened but I didn’t know as I was asleep but when my mum told me it was scary. Everyone took really good care of me, not only in PICU, where I had a nurse 24 hours a day, but also on the ward which I think led to a really speedy recovery. I feel so much better now and have gone back to school and saw all my friends which was a really big step for me.“
Kate’s dad, Steve, is taking on Bath Half Marathon next year to raise funds for the hospital. Steve says: “You never know when you may need the hospital, and with a seemingly happy, heathy, 12-year-old, we just didn’t see it coming. But honestly, I couldn’t be more grateful to the kind and supportive staff there who made such a stressful time, much more bearable. I’m running for The Grand Appeal not only to support the work that goes on inside the hospital, but also to give back to WATCh, the incredible team who transported Kate from Yeovil Hospital to Bristol when she was in a critical condition. I’m just in awe of the work they do, and this is my way of saying thank you to all the wonderful people who helped make her better.”
To sponsor Steve, head to https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/stephen-robjohn1