Berkshire toddler survives rare stroke thanks to quick-thinking parents and Southampton medical team

  • WATCH ITV News Meridian's Juliette Fletcher has been speaking to Carter's family.

The parents of a boy from Crowthorne who suffered a rare stroke at the age of two and survived have thanked hospital staff.

Carter Bayley was rushed to Southampton Children's Hospital when his parents noticed the right side of his face had suddenly dropped.

Carter was put in an induced coma and having undergone rehabilitation he's been able to return home in time for this third birthday.

His parents hope that by talking about his experience, other families may recognise the signs and critically call for help as soon as possible.

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Carter's mum Elise said: "I think I knew it was a stroke after that, I remembered seeing the Act FAST campaign featuring an older gentleman on TV and it looked the same. I had never heard of a toddler having a stroke before, but I just knew we had to get him to hospital.

"It was the worst time for us all. We were told Carter'ss type of stroke was severe and to prepare for the worst, but we were always hopeful. Nobody could tell us forsure what the future was going to look like and if Carter would survive."

Dr Georgina Bird-Lieberman, consultant paediatric neurologist and SCIRT lead, explained: "Carter suffered a severe stroke and was initially put to sleep in intensive care to protect his brain. When he was woken, he was unable to communicate and was severely weak on the right side of his body. It was important that the SCIRT team started his rehabilitation as soon as possible. 

"Having SCIRT, an on-site team, allows for immediate intervention with patients, and weknow from research that starting rehab as soon as medically appropriate leads to betteroutcomes and reduced length of admission. 

"We offer a complete bespoke service, and with Carter being so young, we took a veryplayful approach to his rehab. Despite the extent of Carter’s stroke, he has made aremarkable recovery which is testament to his resilience and the support he has received."

  • Carter's parents had been told to prepare for the worst.

Carter’s Dad, Lawrence, said: "I can't explain how we feel about the whole team at Southampton Children's Hospital. Carter is now back to the happy little boy he was, laughing and playing. He's still got a long way to go, but when I see that smile on his face, we couldn't ask for more than that."

Andrea Whitney, consultant paediatric neurologist at SCH, described this type of stroke as'rare' in a two-year-old, especially as Carter had no underlying cause.

She said: "We were lucky that his parents spotted the signs fast, which enabled us to diagnose his condition and stabilise him as quickly as possible.

"We’re all thrilled with the speed in which Carter has recovered, this is attributed not only to the fast actions of his parents and their unwavering strength but also to our dedicated neuro team our excellent SCIRT service – something we are incredibly lucky to have atSouthampton Children’s Hospital."

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