When he was born on October 29, 2008, Alex was a beautiful, healthy,
full-term (41 weeks) baby. It wasn't until his six-month checkup when
Alex's mother Danielle learned something was wrong. Alex's head
measured abnormally large and his doctor sent him for a CT scan. They
found Alex had congenital hydrocephalus—an accumulation of
cerebrospinal fluid in the brain. Doctor's referred Alex to Seattle
Children's Hospital where he underwent emergency brain surgery to
place a shunt in March 2009.
Following surgery, Danielle noticed Alex wasn't meeting his
milestones. He wasn't sitting, rolling over, using his left arm, or
crawling. In September 2009, he was diagnosed with spastic
quadriplegic cerebral palsy. They believe the cause was the severity
of the hydrocephalus. With limited movement in his arms and legs, Alex
became dependent on a wheelchair.
After his diagnosis, Alex began visiting Children's Village and
meeting with Laura, a physical therapist who worked with him until he
started preschool. Danielle says Laura was amazing, making therapy fun
and helping the family better understand cerebral palsy.
In 2010, Alex met Allison, his current physical therapist. She has
helped him reach many goals and was there when he took his first step.
In addition to physical therapy, Alex had difficulty speaking and took
speech therapy and hippotherapy (equine or horse therapy) in 2011,
graduating from it in 2014.
In June 2015 Alex underwent a bilateral surgery to lengthen the
tendons and ligaments in his legs, hips, and ankles. His surgery also
reconstructed both feet so he could achieve better range of motion and
the possibility of walking!
The surgery was a success. Alex worked with Allison in intensive
therapy three times a week and now, thanks to his care at Children's
Village, Alex walks unaided both with and without a walker! He keeps
progressing and thriving. In Alex's book, failure is not an option!
Through Children's Village, Alex has found a degree of independence.
By supporting the Children's health campaign, we can grow capacity and
help more children like Alex find the strength to conquer the world.