YOUNG mum Samantha Round broke down in tears when doctors diagnosed her newborn son with an ultra-rare genetic disorder, which rendered him unable to digest protein.
But, eight months on, little Dylan is doing just fine – all thanks to the help and support of top dieticians at Alder Hey Children’s Hospital.
Now, grateful Samantha, 26, of Sutton, is organising a special sponsored walk from St Helens to Alder Hey to give something back.
She said: “My little boy was diagnosed with PKU (Phenylketonuria) when he was just a couple of weeks old. I broke down in tears straight away – I just couldn’t take the news in.
“But the staff at Alder Hey have been absolutely fantastic with us. They’ve helped me to deal with one thing at a time and we now only have to go to hospital with Dylan once a month.
“His food has to be specially delivered though and his diet is very strict. If we don’t stick perfectly to his diet plan he could suffer brain damage.
“He seems to be getting used to it already though and my little girl Jasmine, who’s five, absolutely adores him.”
Dylan was diagnosed with PKU barely a fortnight after he was born on 11/11/11. If untreated, it can lead to seizures and other serious medical problems.
To manage it, Dylan must only ingest a strict protein-restricted diet supplemented by a medical formula containing amino acids and other nutrients.
And, now Samantha has come to terms with his condition, she is organising an eight-mile sponsored walk on September 30 alongside a dozen members of family and friends.
She added: “I did the Race For Life in memory of my grandmother last year and that inspired me to want to organise a fund-raising event for Dylan.
“I’m going to be pushing Dylan in his pram all the way and Jasmine wants to join us on the walk too. It doesn’t matter how quickly we complete the course – it’s just the finishing that counts.
“We’ve already managed to raise £400 and hope to raise as much as possible between now and September 30.”
Anyone interested in sponsoring the walk can email Samantha at: firstname.lastname@example.org