Touching Lives - October 2009
Alfie Oakley had his first stroke aged two and a half around three years ago. “One day, Alfie had a fit and stopped breathing,” Alfie’s mum, Justine, recalled.
“He had to be resuscitated by the paramedics. We noticed that he had weakness down the right hand side of his body as he wasn’t using that side. Alfie was already being looked after by Great Ormond Street for another condition, so we contacted them and, after a scan, they confirmed that he had had a stroke.”
Since then Alfie has had at least seven further strokes, some mild and others severe, and to reduce the risk of Alfie having further strokes, a stent (a short tube that keeps a passageway open) was put into his arteries in an operation in March 2009.
“The arteries in Alfie’s neck and head had started to close and his carotid artery in the neck had narrowed by as much as 80 per cent,” said Justine. “The operation went well, but there is no guarantee that Alfie will never have another stroke.”
Justine is keen to do as much as she can to help research into child stroke. “If telling people about Alfie’s situation helps another child then we are happy to do whatever we can.”