A MUM has told of her miracle baby who survived meningitis at less than two weeks old.

Lesley Patrick, 31 had just celebrated her first Christmas with new baby Eva when her worst nightmare became a reality.

The civil servant and her husband Graham were settling in for the night on December 28, 2016, when little Eva, who was just 12 days old, began screaming.

Lesley said: "When we tried to comfort her she screamed even more.

"It was terrifying, but as new parents we tried to pass her to each other in case it was something we were doing or not doing to calm her.

"She dozed throughout the night intermittently, but each time she awoke she was crying. She found some comfort being held and lying on her stomach, but could not settle on her back."

Lesley and Graham said they thought she may have colic, but being new parents, weren't sure what the signs were, so contacted Lesley's mum the next morning.

She immediately told the Hamilton couple to phone the NHS, and they raced to the GP for their first available appointment, before being referred to the hospital.

Medics immediately put Eva on antibiotics, in case she had bacterial meningitis, and said they would have to do a lumbar puncture.

The procedure involves inserting a needle into the spine to draw out some of the spinal fluid to test for disease.

Lesley said:" At this point we were very scared, although a part of you thinks you are just being ridiculous.

"We waited to be seen by the nursing staff, trying to feed Eva as she hadn’t taken any fluids since the night before. She managed a few minutes and just seemed too tired to continue.

"The hospital staff were lovely. Their first action was to take swabs from Eva before getting a lumbar puncture.

"My husband and I were advised not to go and went downstairs to the café. At that point I think it hit us that our baby could potentially be very sick.

"We then had to wait for the results of the lumbar puncture, so Eva stayed in overnight, and for the next three nights."

Eventually the baby's temperature got so high that mum Lesley was advised not to handle her little one, and she had to be given intravenous fluids to try and bring it down.

She was also given a feeding tube as she was no longer able to feed herself.

After three days, doctors diagnosed her with viral meningitis.

Lesley explained: "The doctor was fantastic, explaining what was wrong without mentioning meningitis until the very end.

"Once I heard it mentioned I didn't hear anything else that was said.

"Eva got better as quick as she got sick and after nearly 4 days she was discharged.

"She still has her last hearing test ominously on Friday 13th October, but hopefully that will be all clear.

"The meningitis effect though, didn’t disappear when Eva got discharged."

After the diagnosis, Lesley said she struggled to deal with it mentally and felt guilty for leaving her daughter untreated for as long as she did, not realising her condition was so serious.

She was eventually diagnosed with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder by her GP, and she was helped by her local health visitor.

She said: "I struggled to allow others to handle her and I felt an overwhelming sense of guilt for even feeling like that at all, as some people are worse off and have lost their children, or they are living with life changing after affects.

"I felt as though I had no right to feel the way I did when Eva was healthy.

"As Eva was better, people stopped asking if we were ok, because obviously she was ok. It was just me not being able to deal with it.

"If I’m honest, I still feel uncomfortable allowing people who aren’t around her often to handle her. I try and hide it as to not offend anyone but it is still difficult.

"My husband and my mum were huge supports for me on an individual level. I couldn’t have got through it without them.

"Here’s hoping the memory will soon fade."

Husband Graham, 41, is planning to take on a gruelling 100-mile London to Surrey cycling event to raise cash for Meningitis Now, to help others affected by the condition.

The charity aims to stop anyone in the UK dying from meningitis, and information can be found at www.meningitisnow.org.

To donate to Graham's fund visit http://m.virginmoneygiving.com/mt/uk.virginmoneygiving.com/fundraiser-web/fundraiser/showFundraiserProfilePage.action?userUrl=GrahamPatrick&un_jtt_redirect


- Meningitis is usually caused by bacteria or viruses

- Meningitis is inflammation of the membranes that surround and protect the

brain and spinal cord

- Septicaemia is blood poisoning

- Some bacteria that cause meningitis also cause septicaemia

- The early signs and symptoms of meningitis and septicaemia can be similar

to flu and include fever, headache, nausea, vomiting and muscle pain.

- The more specific signs and symptoms include fever with cold hands and

feet, drowsiness, confusion, pale blotchy skin, stiff neck, dislike of bright

lights and a rash which doesn’t fade under pressure.

- In babies, symptoms can also include being floppy and unresponsive, dislike

of being handled, rapid breathing, an unusual, moaning cry and a bulging

fontanelle (soft spot on the top of the head).

- There are an estimated 3,200 cases of bacterial meningitis and septicaemia

each year in the UK.

- If you suspect someone may be ill with meningitis or septicaemia, trust your

instincts and get immediate medical help.