So Cameron made a little bit of history today, he became the first person in NI to receive Plasmapheresis for his condition, and only the 4th person in the UK. Basically the attacking antibodies that are wreaking havoc in his brain tend to reside or hide in the large proteins in his blood. The plasmapheresis machine separates the red blood cells and platelets from the large protein, discards this and replaces it with new blood product.
He did very well, he's very tired and quite weak after it but this is normal as he's just had all his blood taken out, cleaned and put back in!!
It may take a couple of weeks before we see any benefit. The major downside of this is that it's only temporary, his own plasma will start to remake itself, some children can become symptomatic again in 4/5 weeks, however keeping him protected from infection can play a big part in how long he gets out of this treatment. He will have another exchange tomorrow morning and then a few more next week, they cannot give them too close together as it could seriously compromise the clotting factors in his blood. We will be hanging tight in hospital as he has the central line in.
We are hoping this treatment buys us time to get ourselves gathered for organising the post streptococcal blood panel, the Cunningham panel and the other tests he requires to start the process of getting our boy back!
This is the machine at work! The separation process, the yellow bottles of new plasma and the huge bag of 2 litres of old plasma containing the bad antibodies!! Good riddance!!