Painful road ahead for Ai­den

Port Douglas & Mossman Gazette - - NEWS - AN­GELIQUE PAT­TER­SON

THREE-YEAR-OLD Ai­den Toy has to un­dergo months of surgery and skin grafts to fix his left foot un­der at­tack by a Dain­tree ul­cer.

The ul­cer is sur­round­ing the out­side of his an­kle bone and the top of his lit­tle foot and doc­tors are wait­ing for an­tibi­otics to kill the ul­cer be­fore they re­move it in a cou­ple of weeks.

De­spite the sever­ity of his in­jury, Ai­den is in strong spir­its, run­ning around on the foot and play­ing games like any nor­mal three-yearold.

“He’s been a real trooper, you go to the doc­tors and they can’t be­lieve he is walk­ing on it,” Ai­den’s mum Ta­nia said.

“He has been amaz­ing all the time in the hos­pi­tal but he’s be­com­ing trau­ma­tised by the con­tin­ual dress­ing of the foot be­cause it’s quite painful and nasty to look at.”

Eight weeks ago Ai­den’s par­ents Ta­nia and Nick Toy no­ticed his foot was swollen and took him to the lo­cal doc­tors af­ter a cou­ple of days and were sent home with an­tibi­otics.

“There was not bite site, no scratch, there was noth­ing so the GP said it could be any­thing and put us on a broad spec­trum an­tibi­otic,” Ta­nia said.

“The week af­ter we were down in Cairns Base Hos­pi­tal be­cause I was giv­ing birth and the foot got a lot worse and he started limp­ing so we went to see the GP in Cairns and they put us straight to emer­gency.”

Ai­den was sent home af­ter a week of an­tibi­otics pumped hourly into him through drips but re­turned two weeks later when the an­tibi­otics stopped work­ing and his foot got worse again.

“They re­alised it was some­thing more sin­is­ter but they couldn’t get any­thing from the blood or swabs so they put him un­der anaes­thetic,” Ta­nia said.

“They dug right in and got some­thing back and sent that away to Vic­to­ria and it came back as the Dain­tree ul­cer.

“We found that out last Thurs­day so he’s only been on the proper med­i­ca­tion now for a week and it’s stopped spread­ing, the swelling is go­ing down and for the first time it ac­tu­ally looks like an ul­cer.”

The next step for the tod­dler is to have the ul­cer re­moved, skin grafted and then it is go­ing to be a cou­ple years to re­cover.

“He will keep some of the foot, a lot of the foot and it’s go­ing to need skin graft­ing and will be a few years for him to re­cover from it,” Ta­nia said.

“We don’t know the dam­age to it re­ally, to the func­tion­al­ity of the foot un­til they get in there be­cause it should only be eat­ing, in the­ory, tis­sue, skin and fat cells.

“They like to take the whole ul­cer and a healthy bit around it as well just to be sure.”

Af­ter the surgery, the Toys will have to or­gan­ise sup­port for lit­tle Ai­den who can­not han­dle the foot be­ing re­dressed.

“My hus­band Nick does it ev­ery day, he has to take the dress­ing off and clean it and re­dress it but he goes nuts so we are prob­a­bly go­ing to have to get help for him,” Ta­nia said.

“It’s some­thing that’s go­ing to have to be done ev­ery day po­ten­tially for years es­pe­cially with the skin grafts.

“He is in great spir­its, it’s re­ally hard to see him in pain that’s the re­ally hard part and just know­ing we have only just started the jour­ney - it has been go­ing on for months and now we have got years ahead of us.”

Long road ahead: Ai­den Toy with mum Ta­nia

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