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Mum praises RHC staff for calm, professional response to emergency

Wednesday, August 12, 2020

A Renfrewshire mum has praised the medical team at the Royal Hospital for Children, after her son was treated for a potentially life-threatening allergic reaction.

Laura Kennedy’s 13-year-old son Robin has had serious allergies to certain foods all his life but on 22 July he went into Anaphylactic shock at his Houston home.

Anaphylaxis is a severe and potentially life-threatening allergic reaction affecting more than one body system such as the airways, heart, circulation, gut and skin. Symptoms can start within seconds or minutes of exposure to the food or substance you are allergic to and usually will progress rapidly. Anaphylaxis is potentially life-threatening, and always requires an immediate emergency response.

Laura, who works as a Healthcare Support Worker at the Royal Alexandra Hospital, said: “Robin has been under the care of Dr Conor Doherty since he was two, but he’s never had a serious episode like this before. 

“It started just before 6pm and we knew something was wrong right away. He had taken one bite of a bar which contained Cashew nuts. We firstly tried him on Piriton and his inhaler but that wasn’t enough. He’s always had an epi pen for emergencies and for the first time, he needed to use it. That was the scary bit for Robin.

“The emergency ambulance came really quickly and even though it seemed under control by that point, we headed for the Royal Hospital for Children as Anaphylaxis can re-occur as the adrenalin subsides.

“Robin was a bit anxious about going to hospital because of Covid, but I assured him that it was very safe. Once he reached hospital they also put him at ease.

“En-route to the hospital he developed a rash, was sick and was struggling to breath. It was scary but we also knew he has in good hands.”

As soon as they arrived at the RHC, Robin was rushed to resus, where he was given three more shots of adrenalin to bring his allergic reaction under control.

Laura said: “Despite how serious the situation was, everyone remained so calm and professional and I think that’s what kept me and Robin calm too. He remained in resus for a while as they had to get his saturation levels under control.

“I was so impressed with how they treated him. There were so many people in that room and all of them were so kind to him.”

Once stable, Robin was admitted to the hospital’s Clinical Decision Unit where he stayed for a further 24 hours. During this time he was visited by his allergy doctor Conor Doherty.

Laura said: “Dr Doherty is so down to earth, Robin loves him. When we have consultations he speaks directly to Robin, which he likes.

“Over the years he’s been brilliant – he really is the most unassuming man and is very caring. Robin was delighted to see him on the ward and was really chuffed he got to see him.

“Being brought in as an emergency was a first for all of us, but thanks to the amazing staff it was a lot less scary than it could have been. We are so grateful for their skill and expertise.”

Dr Conor Doherty is a paediatric allergy specialist based at the Royal Hospital for Children.

Dr Doherty said: “It’s always a pleasure to see Robin and his mum. He’s a sensible lad and learnt a lot from the entire episode. He and his mum knew what to do and followed their allergy plan well. Anaphylaxis is a reassuringly unusual event in childhood but it’s important that all children with allergies have an assessment, know what they are allergic to and know how they should use their medication.”




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Last Updated: 13 August 2020