A mum thought her four-year-old son was being 'silly' when he said he couldn't move, only for him to be diagnosed with a rare nervous system disease that would leave him almost totally paralysed within 24 hours.
Oliver Davis had been a happy, active child before he woke up on June 2 2018 in “unbearable” pain complaining that he couldn’t sit up.
His mum Belinda, from New South Wales, Australia, said she had initially thought he was just being silly. However, she realised the severity of the situation when he had to roll out of bed, having lost all strength in his abdomen.
By 2pm, the little boy was in agony. Belinda, 32, rushed him to the closest GP, who sent the duo on to the Sydney Children's Hospital, in Randwick, in an ambulance, The Mirror reported.
Upon their arrival, Oliver was put under and doctors did an MRI scan as a “process of elimination” in an attempt to determine what was wrong.
After ruling out brain tumours, cancers and other 'scary' prognosis’, physicians finally diagnosed Oliver with Guillain-Barre syndrome (GBS).
Oliver was completely paralysed from the neck down within 24 hours, losing all control of his reflexes and nerves.
According to Mayo Clinic, GBS is classified as a rare neurological disorder, where the body’s immune system attacks the nerves.
A definite cause is still unknown, though the syndrome is often triggered by viral or bacterial illnesses.
Belinda said no one was able to tell the family how long Oliver would be paralysed for, or in hospital, due to a lack of information around the illness.
Thankfully, while Oliver was unable to move his arms and legs and had trouble swallowing food, he never lost the ability to breathe.
Despite this, he was entirely paralysed for a terrifying four weeks – over which period his family never left his side.
“He spent a few days in ICU and he didn't want me to leave his sight, even for a toilet break,” Belinda toldDaily Mail Australia .
“I cried so much those first few days because we didn't know what the outcome would be.”
Belinda said Oliver was in hospital for about three months, remaining there as he regained movement as he had to learn how to crawl and walk again.
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He was suffering from extreme pain all over his body and experienced hot and cold flashes.
Seeing as his nerves were not yet responsive, he needed a catheter and feeding tube.
Oliver later had a relapse and became ill once more, but this thankfully lasted less than a week, and wasn’t as serious as the first attack.
Three years later, Oliver, now 7, lives a fairly normal life, with a physio appointment once a week and regular swimming lessons.
Belinda described her boy as a “real trooper”.
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