Siobhan and Ryan McNamara became concerned when, on a Saturday in late February, their energetic eight year-old son Henry, was coughing, lethargic, and his lips were swelling. Doctors at a local emergency department tested for strep throat and flu and sent Henry home with antibiotics and steroids, but Henry didn’t respond to the drugs.
The McNamaras came to Valley Medical Center, where doctors determined that Henry had Stevens Johnson Syndrome – or SJS – a rare and serious disorder that affects the mucous membranes. Henry spent nearly a month at VMC, where staff in the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit have the skills and equipment to manage the unique needs of SJS patients.
“I’ve never felt so helpless in my entire life,” shared Siobhan, “but I knew that Henry was going to be okay at VMC. They were equipped.”
Henry is now back in school and has regained the eleven pounds he lost during his illness. The McNamaras credit VMC for a speedy diagnosis of this rare disorder, and their ability to provide the special care he needed.
You can read more about this story, and see updates about our other programs, in our Fall 2015 Impact Report.