Report by Helen Ford
A 10-year-old boy from Stockton has spoken of his pride at being among the youngest patients in the region to take part in trials for COVID-19 treatments.
Aiden Temple was admitted to hospital in December with suspected appendicitis.
There, it was discovered that Aiden in fact, had COVID-19. He was then diagnosed with paediatric multisystem inflammatory syndrome - or PIMS-TS. It is a rare condition in children with coronavirus, which occurs when the body's immune system goes into overdrive.
Aiden was being treated at the University Hospital of North Tees. Staff there offered Aiden and his family the chance for him to take part in a nationwide study, testing potential COVID treatments. The RECOVERY trial, as it is known, examines the effectiveness of existing drugs and treatments in fighting COVID-19.
Aiden's parents were clear that the decision on whether to take part lay with their son. He agreed, and was given a dose of intravenous immunoglobulin - a protein essential to the body's immune system.
Within a short time, Aiden's condition improved.
Aiden and his mum Jane
Now, his experiences will feed into wider research on the use of immunoglobulin in treating children with COVID. Alex Ramshaw, a lead research nurse at North Tees and Hartlepool NHS Foundation Trust, is immensely grateful to Aiden for taking part, particularly because his circumstances were so unusual.
Because there are so few children, their data is so important to help answer the question on what treatment is effective for them.The data that we'll collect from him and the information he's provided are really useful and they're going to contribute to how we treat COVID in the future.
For Aiden himself, the reason for taking part is simple.
I felt it was the right thing to do so other people could get better, quicker.
Aiden's parents are immensely proud of their son, and, two months on, are relieved at the positive outcome from their ordeal.