Addison was born at 35 weeks. At 5 weeks old she felt warm and I took her to an urgent care where they took her temperature on her forehead, I said she is under 3 months can you please take her temperature rectally, I was told they didn’t have that ability. They said she didn’t have fever and she was okay. I felt uneasy with their call, I drove her to the ER where she was diagnosed with bacterial meningitis and sepsis. She had S. gallolyticus. (Sepsis and Meningitis) She was transported to the PICU where she fought for her life.
She was started on penicillin around the clock. After 5 days they decided to moved her to a regular floor, within hours of being there, she had a seizure and was RRT ( like a code) back to the PICU. Back in the PICU she was put on EEG monitoring, oxygen for the respiratory distress and hooked up to a thousand machines. She underwent an MRI which discovered she has an abscess in her brain that was an infection, we spoke with a neurosurgeon who advised us if it didn’t improve they would have to go in through her soft spot and essentially do brain surgery to drain it.
Thankfully the continued head ultrasounds showed that the infection was getting better. Eventually she was moved back to a regular room. After about 15 days they thought she would be able to go home soon but then she spiked another fever and was having respiratory issues and was back on oxygen and close monitoring.
The infectious disease team had immunology come by and they decided to do a workup. She had low IGG (immunoglobin) and CH50, they ended up deciding to start IVIG to prevent another life threatening illness. She was on infusions for most of her life until recently when we decided to give it a second try of going off and her immune system appears to be functioning on its own now. We attempted one other time a year ago to trial off and her numbers dropped too low and she had to go back on them.
Addison has had a rollercoaster of a recovery but has made a full recovery with no known lasting effects which is rare. Only 10% of children are left “untouched” without any effects from meningitis and Addison is the 10%. She is the happiest person you have ever met and to know her is to love her. We are so incredibly blessed and lucky. Meningitis changed us all, we look at life much different and in a positive way.
Source: Morgan Caraway-mother