Makayla is an active, smart, and very determined 19 month old girl. She loves to play with her dolls, read books and do everything her 3 year old brother does. Makayla is also an in-utero stroke survivor, who doesnt have use of her right side of her body, especially affecting her right arm\hand(hemiparensis).
At 3 months old we notice she wasnt using her Right arm, she would let it just hang there not even aware that it was her own. She was not able to hold toys, feed herself or do anything with her right arm\hand. So we told her Pediatrician and she suggested Physical Therapy thinking maybe a broken collar bone at borth. After 3 months of therapy there was no improvement. Makayla was then refer to see a Neurologist in Milwakee, where they did an MRI and determined she had a stroke before she was born (during the 8th month of my pregnancy).
Makayla recieves therapy 4 times a week with an awesome team of therapists. We travel to see a Pediatric Therapist an hr and a half each way twice a week, in order for Makayla to receive the care needed. She also recieves Occupation and Physical Therapy in her Day Care Setting with two other therapists. At home we are constantly encouraging her to use "two hands" and we do stretches and daily therapy. Makayla also wears multiple braces- She has a trubo AFO for her right foot, along with a supportive lift for her left. Along with that she has an arm brace in order for her hand to stay open for play and better support of that side. She also uses Kinesio Tape which helps keep her muscles in the right directions.
In November 2009 Makayla had also suffered a terrifying seizure which was a side effect of the stroke. It had lasted in and around an hr long. Her brain was not strong enough to pull herself out of the seizure and she had to be given medication in order for it to stop. She was disgnosed with status epilepticus, which is a very serious seizure disorder which she is now on daily medication.
Doctors say Makayla may never gain full function of her right hand yet her docs and therapists are extremely optimistic in her recovery. She is very smart, strong, determined lil girl who has a great personality and eager to learn and try new things. We pray for her recovery everyday and know that this will not hold her back. She is improving everyday gaining more and more use and mobility! We are so proud fo her!
Before Makayla was disnosed with her in-utero stroke we were never even aware of the possibly of this happening. Throughout all of the books I have read, the doctors I spoke with, my past pregnacy- we were never even informed of this illness and its affects. I hoping that sharing Makayla's story increases awareness of hemiplegia and infant stroke. I want to spread the word that KIDS HAVE STROKES TOO! Any Donations will help CHASA continue to improve the lives of pediatric stroke and hemiplegia survivors through support, education, advocacy, and research.
We as a family will be doing two things in order to support children who have suffered strokes like Makayla. On May 2, 2010 we will be walking in the Pediatric Stroke Stroll down in Milwaukee, WI. Along with that we will hopefully be attending the National CHASA Retreat where parents can talk with others who understand the challenges of raising a child who has hemiplegia.
If you would like more information on Infant and Childhood stroke check out these sites www.chasa.org www.kidshavestrokes.org
If you know and love a child stroke survivor there is a great support group you can join and connect with other people who understand check it out at www.hemikids.org