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Christmas without fits for little Ernie

Sheffield Wednesday player Reda Johnson has donated �5,000 to Norfolk Park School,half of the amount they are appealing for to enable them to buy a 'Magic Carpet'. Reda with pupil Sophie Hindmarsh

Sheffield Wednesday player Reda Johnson has donated �5,000 to Norfolk Park School,half of the amount they are appealing for to enable them to buy a 'Magic Carpet'. Reda with pupil Sophie Hindmarsh

A three-year-old is looking forward to his first Christmas free of epileptic fits - after experts successfully treated him by ‘disconnecting’ half of his brain.

Little Ernie Djedje, from Shiregreen, was diagnosed at six weeks old with West Syndrome, a form of epilepsy affecting babies.

He had as many as 100 seizures a day, lasting between 30 seconds and six minutes, which affected his development and meant he needed constant supervision from his devoted family.

But thanks to the expertise of medics, Ernie is no longer experiencing seizures after undergoing an eight-hour operation to cut the connection between the right and left side of his brain.

Ernie’s mum Kelly, aged 34, said: “Before Ernie had the surgery he was on medication, but his condition became so severe he was having up to 100 seizures a day.

“It affected Ernie’s development, so he’d learn things, and then lose the ability. He became so ill that an operation was needed to stop the seizures.”

A team at Sheffield Children’s Hospital carried out all his scans and assessments before the marathon surgical procedure at Birmingham Children’s Hospital.

Since the operation, Ernie has not had a single seizure.

“The care we’ve received has been absolutely fantastic, it has transformed his life,” said Kelly.

“There is a huge difference in Ernie, it’s like having a different child. Before the operation he had the abilities of a three-month-old, but since then he’s been making improvements all the time.”

Kelly, also mum to Alfie, six, said she and husband Franck are now looking forward to their first seizure-free Christmas.

“It’s going to be special because before he’s always had seizures on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, and to be free of those will be fantastic for him,” she added.

Chris Rittey, a neurological consultant at the hospital, said the results of the operation were ‘fantastic’.

 

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