18 April 2023
Abbie Jeakins, a Finance Manager, and Luke Jeakins, a Project Lead at Logic Contract Services, discovered their baby, Lila, was unresponsive, and called for an ambulance. It was suspected that she had Viral Meningitis and she was taken to the Southampton Paediatric Intensive Care Unit. Abbie shares their story:
“On the 19th of August when Lila was 4 weeks old, I found her in her mosses masker, blue and floppy. I called for an ambulance, and she was taken to Frimley Park Hospital; she needed to be resuscitated twice on the way. When Luke and I arrived at the hospital, there was a whole team ready and waiting. Lila had suspected Viral Meningitis and was sedated and intubated. Due to the severity of Lila’s illness, she needed to be transferred to Southampton Paediatric Intensive Care Unit. An ambulance from Southampton arrived within the hour, along with a specialist paediatrician consultant.
When we arrived at Southampton PICU, a team was on hand to make sure Lila was stable. We met with consultants straight away who outlined Lila’s condition as well as the care and tests needed. On the same day, Lila had various tests to try and work out what the issue was.
After 2 days, Lila seemed to stabilise and together with the consultant, we decided to wake Lila up and remove the breathing tubes. Unfortunately, as soon as she woke, Lila started to have a seizure so she had to be re-sedated. Results confirmed that the virus had spread to her spinal fluid and an emergency MRI scan was carried out. The results of the MRI showed that Lila had swelling on the brain and had damage due to an unexpected stroke. Consultants sat down with us to explain more and answered any questions I had.
The following day, Lila had an ECG; this revealed Lila was having constant aggressive seizures and her medication was changed.
While doing observations, a nurse noticed Lila’s eyes rolling and another MRI was carried out. The results showed that Lila had had another 4/5 strokes. Again, the consultant sat with us and explained what this meant for Lila moving forward.
Thankfully from then on, Lila’s condition got better. After 8 days in the PICU, she was woken up and her tubes were removed. After 9 days, her care was downgraded, and she was sent to a ward to fully recover.
I genuinely believe that if it wasn’t for the expertise of the PICU team that Lila wouldn’t be with us today. They were quick to react to any changes in her condition. The team give one-on-one care and observe your child constantly.
When results came in, the consultant would always sit us down and explain in detail, giving us the opportunity to ask questions, although they were happy to answer questions at any point. Before the nurses carried out any observations and tests, they always explained what they were doing and helped get you involved in your child’s care where possible; they encouraged us to bring soft toys and blankets from home to make it seem a bit nicer. The nurses would ensure you went home and got food and sleep and would call with any updates.”
Logic Contract Services have chosen Southampton Hospitals Charity as their Charity of the Year for 2023.
The Charity was put forward by two staff, including Abbie, who had had personal experiences in which the University Hospital Southampton had saved their child’s life. They will be undertaking various fundraising activities including a movie night and football game throughout the year.