needs help: Nicole Adams-Bramble is on a mission to raise funds to offset her son, Kadane Bramble’s medical costs. The Ministry of Health has assisted with almost half of the US$50,785 needed for emergency tests at the Boston Children’s Hospital.
—Photo: VERDEL BISHOP
Mom of child stroke victim appeals for help
When we hear that someone has had or is at risk for a stroke we tend to immediately picture an older person. Stroke is rare among children but it can occur. When Kadane Bramble suffered his first stroke at age five, his parents were shocked. They had never heard of a child having a stroke — most people, still haven’t.
A year later Kadane suffered another stoke; then another stroke accompanied with seizures. Kadane was eventually diagnosed with suffering with Transient Ischaemic Attacks (TIA), also known as a “mini-stroke”, which continues to be a constant battle for the youngster who turned 13 last Sunday.
It turns out that stroke according to some research is the sixth leading cause of death in infants and children. And experts say doctors and hospitals need to be far more aggressive in detecting and treating it. Recently Kadane’s medical team at Mt Hope Medical Sciences Complex revealed that they have exhausted all available resources and have suggested that his parents seek further management abroad. The Ministry of Health has assisted with almost half of the US$50,785 needed for emergency tests at the Boston Children’s Hospital. Kadane is expected to travel to Boston on October 18.
Kadane’s condition is debilitating. In a bid to offset the medical costs, his mother, Nicole Adams-Bramble, is doing everything within her power to ensure that he has a chance of recovery. Adams-Bramble describes Kadane’s illness as a nightmare which is difficult to watch him battle. He has also developed a seizure disorder which occurs only while sleeping.
“Kadane has been accepted to receive treatment at the Boston Children’s Hospital. His doctors at Mt Hope have advised me to seek medical attention outside of Trinidad and the Boston Children’s Hospital in Boston, USA has agreed to help at the cost of $US 50,785. This is without the cost of visa and airfare. We have already provided the hospital with a copy and compact disk of all Kadane’s medical tests. The Ministry of Health has helped us with US$25, 392,” Adams-Bramble said.
TIA is a serious condition. It refers to temporary brain dysfunction. It lasts no longer than 24 hours. TIA is due to a shortage of blood and oxygen to the brain. It serves as a warning for a potential stroke. A TIA results from a temporary blockage of the blood supply to the brain. The carotid artery in the front of the neck is a major supply of blood to the brain. A build-up of plaque and hardening of this artery or other arteries can slow or stop blood flow.
The reason for the blockage may include a blood clot or a piece of plaque (called an embolus) from inside the wall of an artery that breaks off and blocks blood flow to a portion of the brain. Other possible causes of TIA include: A blood clot dislodges from the heart and moves to the brain, blocking blood flow. Temporary low blood pressure in the brain may occur due to narrowed arteries in the neck.
TIA symptoms occur abruptly. They usually last less than ten minutes or they may persist for up to 24 hours. The effects differ depending on the location of the blockage.
TIA symptoms are similar to those of a stroke. They require immediate medical attention. Symptoms may include: Blindness in one eye, often described as a window shade dropping, and/or other visual problems, weakness, numbness, or tingling of the face, arm, leg, or one side of the body (usually affects one side of the body, but there are exceptions).
Difficulty speaking or understanding words, dizziness, unsteadiness of gait, or falling. Trouble with balance or coordination, loss of consciousness, nausea, vomiting, sudden confusion or loss of memory are also symptoms of TIA.
Kadane attends Montrose Government Primary school in Chaguanas. The standard four pupil was first diagnosed with TIA in 2005. During the last three years, his condition has worsened.
A letter dated March 26, 2013, from Dr Vindra Singh, Paediatric Consultant and acting Clinical Head of the Department of Paediatric Services states that further management is Kadane’s best option.
According to Dr Singh, “Kadane has been regularly reviewed by our Paediatric Cardiologist and Paediatric Neurologist. We have been unable to provide a definitive diagnosis and hence customised management for Kadane. We have exhausted our available resources. We have suggested that he seeks further management abroad where there are more resources available”.
Kadane’s mother wants the seizures and strokes to go away. She is relieved that Kadane will get the medical treatment for his condition.
“I want them to find whatever is triggering the strokes and seizures. Kadane will be doing various tests at the hospital. They already have all his medical records and files. My aunt is liaising with the doctors there. The Ministry has already sent their money to Boston but we have to start making payments soon,” Adams-Bramble said.
Adams-Bramble is thankful for the treatment Kadane has received from local doctors; however, she wants the powers that be to look into existing medical equipment which she said may not be functioning properly.
“When we sent his CDs with his x-rays along with other records, the specialists in Boston had a hard time reviewing them. They said the Xrays were of poor quality, which was a challenge. When I mentioned this to Kadane’s doctor he said most local medical equipment are refurbished which is one reason for poor quality tests.
“This is a serious problem that the Ministry should look into,” Adams-Bramble said.
Adams-Bramble, who works at Home Gourmet Limited at Angostura Limited, has another son who is 19 years old and is a breadwinner of her household. Her husband has been a renal patient for the last seven years and is currently on dialysis and is unable to work.
She is hoping that the public can assist through donations to the RBC account 100006171339621. Adams-Bramble can also be contacted at 747-3099, 765-3464 or at email@example.com.