A previously healthy three-year-old is now fighting for her life in hospital after catching a deadly strain of E. coli on holiday in Norfolk.
Harper Davis, from Haverhill in Suffolk is being treated at Nottingham Children’s Hospital – a specialist centre for children with kidney problems – after she began to suffer from vomiting and diarrhoea.
The Davis family, including mother and father Melissa and Dean, and their four children were enjoying a summer break earlier this month when their daughter fell ill.
After being rushed to hospital doctors confirmed she had a serious strain of E. coli.
Harper developed haemolytic uraemic syndrome (HUS) – a rare kidney condition that as a result of the bacteria.
It happens when red blood cells are destroyed and block the kidneys’ filtering system.
Harper Davis from Haverhill is seriously ill in hospital after being struck down by E. coli while on a family holiday
She has suffered acute kidney failure, had seizures, peritonitis and developed diabetes as a result of her illness.
She has also had three blood transfusions and at least three operations.
Harper’s mum Melissa told Sun Online: ‘We are in a living nightmare. We have had the most awful summer holidays.
‘We ended up being blue lighted to Nottingham after 48hrs.’Harper’s illness began with diarrhoea, although she was still playing with friends and siblings as she was fine in herself.
‘On day seven she began passing blood so we presented at our GP who requested stool samples, however upon inspection by me we went to A&E.’And thank god we did.’
Sarah Eghan, a friend of the family said: ‘She has been in and out of intensive care. Her little body is fighting against everything.
‘It’s been three weeks in hospital now and we just don’t know how long this is going to last.’
Sarah has set up a Go Fund Me account to help the family.
Melissa is at her daughter’s bedside while her husband Dean is taking care of their other three children 110 miles away, Ms Egan revealed.
She said: ‘Melissa is in Nottingham with Harper while her dad is coping at home with their other three children and is trying to keep things as normal as possible.
‘They will want the family to go up but you can’t have three kids and two adults staying in a hospital so they will want a hotel. They are both self-employed but obviously can’t focus on work right now.
‘I know what financial pressures there are when someone is in hospital, and I just felt they shouldn’t have to be worrying about money at a time like this. I just felt they needed a bit of financial backing.
‘As a parent you think this could happen to any one of us so I set up the fund. It’s just from one mum to another – trying to help out.’