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Pioneering treatment reduces disability in premature babies with serious brain hemorrhage
Date:3/7/2010

when he was just two weeks old and was attached to a machine for four days to pump out the fluid.

Mrs Walker-Cox, 36, said: "We were told after the haemorrhage that Isaac may not make it through the night, that he had one per cent survival rate.

"When Professor Whitelaw told us about the research trial, we thought we didn't have anything to lose.

"Professor Whitelaw had so far carried it out on 17 babies so it was very new but we decided that if it worked it would mean Isaac did not have to have a shunt.

"We just kept watching the liquid go through the pump day after day, just waiting to see if it worked."

Isaac now has mild paralysis on the left side of his body caused by the haemorrhage but he doesn't let it hold him back.

Mrs Walker-Cox said: "We were told Isaac may not be able to walk, and we didn't think he would be able to go to a mainstream school because we expected he would have a learning disability.

"But mentally he has no problems at all, he has an above average reading age and he is very good with computers.

"He just gets on with life and is an outgoing, happy little boy.

"We are really excited to have been part of the DRIFT treatment in the early days, it's nice for Isaac too because he knows what he has been through and he feels proud."

Professor Andrew Whitelaw, a Neonatologist and Ian Pople, Paediatric Neurosurgeon at North Bristol NHS Trust, have pioneered DRIFT at the University of Bristol and it is hoped it will soon be offered, renamed 'ventricular lavage', as a service at Southmead Hospital in Bristol.

Isaac Walk-Cox lives in Yate, South Gloucestershire, with mum Rebekah, 36, dad Steven, 35, and brothers Owen, six, and Ethan, three.


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Contact: Joanne Fryer
joanne.fryer@bristol.ac.uk
44-117-331-7276
University of Bristol
Source:Eurekalert

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