A Sleaford teenager who has endured four and a half months isolated in a hospital room due to complications with life-changing surgery has finally celebrated returning home.
Keira Beeson, came home a week ago, just in time to celebrate her 14th birthday having been confined to a room at Queen’s Medical Centre, Nottingham, since an operation last autumn related to her ulcerative colitis - an inflammatory bowel disease.
Having won awards for raising funds and awareness in the past for inflammatory bowel disease charities, the strain had been getting to the usually stoical teen, until mum Shelley thought of appealing on Facebook for well-wishers to send Christmas cards to cheer her up, and was answered with hundreds in the post.
Mum Shelley said: “It’s absolutely fantastic to be home and in a semi-normal routine. Keira’s mobility is still not great and she is getting her strength up with physiotherapy and being fed by a tube from her nose to her stomach, but she is doing a million times better than she was.”
Keira was diagnosed with colitis aged seven and has suffered from symptoms including stomach pain, fatigue, blood loss, weight loss and diarrhoea. She had gone in for reconstructive surgery to place her stoma internally instead of externally, but the operation developed complications and surgeons had to abort.
Shelley said: “She deteriorated again after Christmas with sepsis and was in intensive care with many infections.
“She is so glad to be home and be able to have school friends round instead of being isolated. I can take her out and she is so much brighter.”
Fortunately the hospital school helped Keira keep up with her studies via one to one tutoring in liaison with Kesteven and Sleaford High School, which she hopes to return to after the half-term break.
“Everyone has been so supportive,” said Shelley.
“She loved reading all those cards and messages and you would see the smile it put on her face. She got hundreds of cards, with more coming each day for weeks, to look forward to. She was still receiving things up until she left hospital. She had cards from Canada, Florida, Australia and Cyprus. She was definitely in people’s thoughts.”
Shelley said it had been a tough time for the whole family and was grateful for all messages of support.
They hope to let Keira regain her strength before further possible surgery. Shelley said: “Keira is desperate to have the next bit of the operation and get rid of the stoma, but it depends on what damage has been done.”