Help Luke: York Boy, 2, Battling Lifelong Conditions – Fundraiser
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Help Luke: York Boy, 2, Battling Lifelong Conditions – Fundraiser

Four days overdue, Luke was born and immediately his parents started to become concerned. After spending his first nine days in the Special Care Baby unit at York Hospital, Luke was finally allowed home. However, the challenges didn’t stop there. At this point, Nat and Tom were unaware of the battle they were facing. Whilst Luke was set for a future battling infantile spasms, Cerebral Visual Impairment and Cerebral Palsy. All they knew after the first nine days was their son was coming home. Luke continued to spend his first few weeks at home. His parents spoke of how his crying turned to screaming, medical professionals dismissed the symptoms as reflux or colic. One day before Luke turned six months old he received a diagnosis. For Nat and Tom, it finally felt like a step in the direction. The referral to a consultant paediatrician brought back the first diagnosis, Luke had ‘Infantile spasms’ (also known as West Syndrome). This syndrome is a form of epilepsy that causes seizures. Nat said: “He needed the seizures to stop because they were causing more and more damage to his brain.” Following the diagnosis, Luke began a rigorous course of medication, including injections and oral medications being administered multiple times each day. The steroid medication began to bring his seizures back under control. After this, Nat and Tom realised he wasn’t visually tracking objects. After further tests Luke was also diagnosed with Cerebral Visual Impairment, registering him as “severely sight impaired”. More recently, Luke has also been diagnosed with Cerebral Palsy which affects his whole body. One year ago was the first time Luke rolled from front to back, but his movement hasn’t progressed further than that. In a journey riddled with hardships, Nat reflected and said: “My maternity leave was spent on the sofa cuddling Luke and trying to stop him from crying, It’s been hell.” Despite all of the challenges, Tom and Nat are determined to provide their son with the best future possible. They have set up a Facebook page to document his journey for those who are interested. Additionally, they have set up a JustGiving page in order to help fund potentially life altering therapies. In order to move his legs, Luke requires specialist equipment as well as hydrotherapy. Even though it’s been a tricky road so far, Nat and Tom still see the positives of having Luke in their lives. Nat said: “It’s changed our lives completely, but we’ve met some amazing people along the way.”