On the 26th July 2016 Lottie Evans, aged 3 from Warrington in Cheshire, was on holiday in Wales with family and friends celebrating a 50th birthday. On the Saturday we arrived in the caravan and Lottie appeared to be well, however on the Sunday Lottie’s parents noticed throughout the morning that Lottie was extra clumsy and dropped around 4 drinks, as the day went on Lottie was very irritable and quiet, she would not eat and was would not sit stil she was sliding off chairs onto the floor. Lottie’s parents through she may be tired from a late night so put her in her buggy for a sleep. When Lottie woke up she was unable to walk she fell over and it was noted that Lottie was unable to speak, however still at this point her parents did not think that Lottie was suffering anything as severe as a stroke. Within the group there was a paramedic she suggested we took Lottie to be checked out at the hospital. It was an hours drive to Bangor from Abersoch and in this journey Lottie was sick. When we arrived and Lottie was seen (this was not rushed y the hospital we waited sometime before she was seen by a DR). We was told in A&E that Lottie had Bells Palsy and had not had a stroke and they would not explain the issue with walking and not talking and therefore would admit her.
Throughout the evening Lottie had 2 CT scans, the DR told us that the student nurse who was in the room had noticed signs relating to strokes and that is why this was investigated 0 we are so thankful for the student nurse raising this and the CT scans being authorized to take place.
In the early ours of Monday morning myself (Lottie’s mum) and dad were taken into a room, we were told that Lottie had suffered a stroke and she would need to be transferred to Alder Hey first thing for further tests to find out the reason why she had had a stroke. I asked whether Lottie would recover and I was told “probably not” my heart sunk at think time Lottie could not walk or speak and had lost the use of the whole right side. We was told that they had only ever known about 1 case that have recovered it is very serious.
On Monday 27th July Lottie was taken by ambulance from Bangor hospital to Alder Hey, on arrival and speaking to the DR he was very positive about Lottie’s recovery and in fact we were given quite a ray of light.
Lottie was an inpatient for 2 weeks on the neurology ward. In this period Lottie had a number of tests and throughout her time in the ward she improved everyday.
Lottie has right sided weakness. Over the past few months Lottie has significantly improved however she still has facial palsy and aphasia but with physiotherapy, occupational therapy, speech therapy and facial palsy therapy we are hopeful she will continue to improve. Lottie takes an aspirin everyday to try to prevent any further stokes.
Despite everything that has happened we consider ourselves blessed, many parents don’t get to take their children home from hospital after a pediatric stroke and tragically around the world stroke is currently one of the top ten causes of death in children.
As a parent and being faced with uncertainty of what the future will hold and many questions I turned to google for some support – what I found is that there is no UK support groups currently available for children and so I have found myself with many questions still unanswered.
When googling pediatric stroke I found that the only information which can be found is very extreme cases of which Lottie has proven that she is a fighter and every day improves, I would like to get Lottie’s story out to give other parents the hope that although a child suffers a pediatric stroke there is sometimes a positive outcome in the hope that we can give another parent who goes through what we have a bit of support and positivity which is not what is currently available.
Alder Hey have been amazing have gone the extra mile for Lottie and if it was not for the amazing care she has had and continues to receive we as a family would not be as hopeful as we are today.
In February DRs confirmed that the Chicken Pox virus caused Lottie's stroke.