An Angus mum who was told her baby son was an hour from death is raising awareness of meningitis.
Jen Torrie, 34, from Forfar, has raised money for a meningitis charity and wants to warn other parents of the tell-tale signs.
Her ordeal began when her son Thain, who is now four, contracted both viral and bacterial meningitis, as well as the cold/flu virus and sickness and diarrhoea.
Jen still recalls the feeling of helplessness as the nursing staff at Ninewells Hospital in Dundee cared for the tot who was then just eight months old.
With Thain now thriving, she wants to make parents aware of symptoms they should not ignore.
“Thain was born four weeks early and there was a slight delay in his development,” she said. “In the October, when he was eight months old, he slept for 12 hours one night and was a bit sick. In the morning he hardly opened his eyes and never made any sounds.”
She contacted NHS 24 and an ambulance crew took the infant to Whitehills Health and Community Care Centre in Forfar, where she was told his condition could be viral. It was thought he had a 24-hour bug. However, the following day he appeared jaundiced and his hands and feet were cold. An ambulance was called and he was taken to Ninewells.
“The next minute he was all wired up, they did blood tests and treated him for bacterial meningitis,” said Jen. “They did a CT scan as the soft bit on his head was quite swollen, which was a tell-tale sign.”
Claire Wright, of the Meningitis Research Foundation, said, “Meningitis and septicaemia can develop suddenly.
“Early symptoms are usually fever, vomiting, headache and feeling unwell. Limb pain, pale skin and cold hands and feet often appear earlier than the rash, neck stiffness, dislike of bright lights and confusion.
“Rapid identification and treatment provides the best chance of survival.”