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Alexis, Christchurch

It happened when Alexis was barely four. This chatty, blonde little bundle of energy was struck by a rare, terrifying illness.  And now her kidneys may never be the same again.

Alexis suffered from vomiting and diarrhoea for five days before doctors discovered she had a serious bacterial infection rarely seen in New Zealand - E. coli 0157.

Alexis' life was in danger, and although she lived hours away, her parents were told they needed to get her to Starship immediately.

As soon as she arrived, Alexis went into surgery and was prepared for kidney dialysis. She was fed essential nutrients through a nasal gastric tube.

It was so much for a child to bear - and still there was more.

Toxins started building up in her body and Alexis was struggling to flush them out of her system. She went into acute kidney failure.

Looking at her beautiful girl lying limp, Leigh could not help but fear the worst.

Alexis was so sick. At one stage, we didn't even think we were going to take her home again.

Alexis Mum Leigh

Alexis was on dialysis for five weeks. Then slowly but surely, she started to improve under the care of Starship's experienced doctors and nurses.

Today, Alexis still takes daily medication and needs to see a specialist every few months. Leigh knows Alexis is lucky to be alive. 

Her kidney won't ever get back to their normal function. She's currently sitting at 40% to 50% kidney function and it may get worse. They just don't know because she's just so young.

Alexis Mum Leigh

Alexis may need us again in the future. And it's kind supporters who ensure that Alexis and all of the children at Starship receive the best possible medical care.

Please supoprt Starship today, click here

Your donation will give seriously ill children like Alexis their best chance of survival.

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