Catterick twins recover after viral meningitis scare at five-days-old

  • Video report by Julia Breen

Twin baby boys from Catterick have fought their way back to health after a viral meningitis scare.

Acer and Axel were born at James Cook University Hospital on Tuesday November 30, weighing 5lb13 and 5lb7.

Just five days later, they were taken to hospital in Darlington after parents Abby and Jason felt something was wrong.

Doctors, nurses and consultants ran tests, which found that viral meningitis - a life-threatening infection - was rapidly taking over Acer's body. He was admitted to theatre and placed on a ventilator.

It left Abby and Jason fearing the worst, describing it as going "from the best feeling in the world" welcoming the boys "to being in hell."

The situation worsened after the couple were told there were no intensive care beds anywhere in the country.


Eventually beds were found at the RVI in Newcastle - but little Acer was so weak doctors told his parents that he might not survive the journey.

"When he was on that operating table in Darlington, on a ventilator - it was touch and go," Jason said.

"We were waiting for blood to come down from Newcastle, for a blood transfusion - when no five-day-old baby should be having a blood transfusion... it was unbelievable."

He needed a blood transfusion before he could be transported - but mum Abby said that medics struggled to fit the lines in his tiny body.

Now, Abby and Jason are raising money for the Sick Children's Trust, which allowed them to stay in accommodation just minutes from the twins' bedsides at the RVI while they were being nursed back to health.