Chesterfield’s Becky Measures speaks of 'rollercoaster’ year after her two young children receive life-saving treatment in hospital

Chesterfield broadcaster Becky Measures has told of a ‘rollercoaster’ year which saw her two young children admitted to hospital within months of each other for life-saving treatment.

Sunday, 14th March 2021, 10:19 pm
Updated Monday, 15th March 2021, 1:26 pm
Eva-May Menzies, seven, and her three-year-old brother Bobby, from Brampton, both required critical care at Sheffield Children's last year
Eva-May Menzies, seven, and her three-year-old brother Bobby, from Brampton, both required critical care at Sheffield Children's last year

Three-year-old, Bobby Menzies, underwent life-saving surgery at Sheffield Children’s Hospital in June 2020 following a fall.

Then just a few months later and with Bobby on his way to a full recovery, his sister Eva-May, aged seven, became very unwell and was treated by staff at the same hospital where she was diagnosed with diabetes.

Now mum Becky, from Brampton, has thanked staff who cared for them both as she takes on a look back on what was a very difficult year for her family.

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Bobby during his stay at Sheffield Children's Hospital, just one day after surgery

She said: “I lost my 25-year-old nephew a day after Bobby came out of hospital. You know when you just think there’s nothing more than can be thrown at me?

"Then obviously Eva-May got her diagnosis. I just thought that was it. I’d had enough of 2020.

"It’s been a rollercoaster but Sheffield Children’s Hospital is just amazing. They taught Eva-May with her diabetes, they let me stay and looked after me. They have a little entertainer who goes round and Bobby didn’t want to come home.

"When you’re there you just see the amazing work. They have a smile on their face even though we’re in the middle of a pandemic.

Eva-May during her stay at Sheffield Children's Hospital

"They’re just wonderful and I can’t thank them enough.”

Hospital visits

Becky told how she took Bobby to Chesterfield Royal Hospital after he hit his head and started being sick.

While there, the youngster became distressed at the thought of having a scan and after some checks was sent home.

But, he continued to be sick and two days after a second hospital visit he became very lethargic.

After visiting the hospital for the third time, a CT scan revealed he had a fractured skull and a bleed on the brain so an ambulance was called to immediately transfer him to Sheffield Children’s Hospital, where a surgical team was ready to operate.

Becky said: “I explained to them the situation and from there it was just awful, it was an horrific experience. To get him to have a scan – he’d had one bad experience and just hated it but I said no you have to scan him.

"They agreed and found that he’d cracked his skull and because it’d been left so long, the blood had started to pool and that was pressing on the lining between the brain and the skull. At that point they needed to get him to Sheffield, he was just laid on the bed with all these monitors on him and at that point I knew it wasn’t good.

"I couldn’t stay in the room because every time I heard a beep go off I thought it was going to be something worse.”

She added: “His dad and I were with him and the surgeons said they would do everything they could but they were concerned he may have already sustained brain damage. I was terrified, all I wanted was for him to come out safe.”

Bobby’s surgery lasted for two and a half hours and was thankfully successful and he had fortunately not sustained any brain damage.

He was then moved onto the dedicated neurosciences ward at Sheffield Children’s, Ward 5, where he spent the next five days recovering before going home.

Sadly, Eva-May then became unwell in October and was diagnosed with type-1 diabetes and a complication known as diabetic ketoacidosis, a condition which occurs when the body starts to run out of insulin and one which can be life-threatening if not spotted and treated quickly.

Becky said: “I noticed Eva-May had started to drop weight. She’d put loads on over lockdown but then went super thin and I noticed as well she was drinking so much water.

"Eva-May is quite health conscious so she does like to drink water but she kept saying she was really thirsty. But, what I didn’t notice because she’s got her own bathroom, I didn’t know she was getting up quite a bit in the night.”

She later became lethargic and, spurred on by on-air interviews she had previously done with people who have diabetes, Becky said she pushed doctors to test her daughters blood sugars.

Eva-May later ended up staying on Ward 3 at Sheffield Children’s for three nights, while the Diabetes Team monitored her, returned her blood sugars to normal levels and began helping the youngster and her family understand her condition and how to manage it.

Becky’s message to other parents

Becky is now urging other parents to persevere with doctors and not ignore symptoms if they think something is wrong with their child.

She added: “Even though we’re in a pandemic you’ve still got to look after you and yours. I think people are so shy at times because sometimes you’re made to feel like you’re a bit neurotic as a parent, but you just know.

"If you’re ever in any kind of doubt – just go to see a doctor. I don’t want to bash anyone but also I don’t want people to have to go through what I’ve gone through and not feel like they can say something.”

Fundraising

Prompted by the care her niece and nephew received, Becky’s sister-in-law Natalie Menzies has decided to take on a 874-mile Lands End to John O’Groats virtual walk in aid of The Children’s Hospital Charity.

And she has already raised more than £1,200 despite having five months still left to go.

Natalie said: "All the donations I have received have helped me to give something back to Sheffield Children’s, so I would like to say a massive thank you from the bottom of my heart to everyone who has sponsored me.”

For more information on signs of head injuries visit the NICE website or for diabetes visit www.diabetes.org.