Nathalie, Beirut, Lebanon
My name is Nathalie and I live with my family in Beirut, Lebanon. Alexandra, my daughter (seen on the right), is 4 years old. She has had her vaccines against meningitis type A, C, W but she contracted the Type B.
Alexandra was a perfectly healthy little girl until that Saturday.
She woke up on November 19th 2016 with a little fever.
She came to our bed and complained about a sore throat.
I gave her Advil and she went back to sleep.
She woke up at around 9 am. She wasn't good. Very sleepy. Barely answered my questions. I assumed it was a flu!
I called her Doctor. He told me to continue with Panadol.
I felt something was not good I don't know why.
In the late afternoon at around 5pm I called him again. He said he would meet me at his clinic. By that time she started having small little violet dots on her stomach. They were very small.
Her feet started hurting. She vomited.
We arrived to the Doctors. Her clinical exam was ok but the violet spots pushed him to send me to the ER.
At 10pm the first blood tests came out normal but our paediatrician had an instinct.
He started antibiotics by intravenous injection (IV) and told me we should spend the night at the hospital.
At 2am that night I heard Alexandra make a small noise. I felt she was not good. The nurses came. They took her blood pressure. It was very low. All her body was blue.
We were taken to Intensive Care Unit (ICU). Alexandra wasn't good at all. The doctors told us it was very critical.
Her kidneys stopped working. She started to swell up.
We had to be transferred to another hospital to start dialysis.
In order to do so she had to go through surgery to put a catheter in her stomach. Her platelets were very low!
Alexandra was then incubated.
We spent 1 month in ICU and more in the hospital.
Today Alexandra is doing great. The doctors call her a living miracle. We are very lucky and we thank God for the chance we had.
However, in Lebanon meningococcemia doesn't exist. People don't know what this disease is. The Bexsero® vaccine is still not available.
As CoMO say, with this disease we have to Trust our Instincts. If we hadn't the story would have been a lot different!
To read another personal meningitis story from around the world, click here.