Tucker loves to be outdoors – camping, fishing and horseback riding are just a few of his favourite things. Thanks to the ongoing care he receives at the Stollery, Tucker shows no signs of slowing down.
Born at just 34 weeks, Tucker started his life in the NICU. When he was strong enough to go home, his parents noticed his breathing sounded funny and it seemed like he was struggling to breathe. Off to the Stollery they went where he had his first airway surgery at just seven weeks old. When Tucker was eight months old, his family brought him back to the Stollery after he started having seizures. At 10 months old, Tucker was diagnosed with pediatric epilepsy. He was having clusters of seizures at a time, the most being 13 back-to-back in a matter of hours. After trying different medications over the years with no success, when Tucker was almost two years old, his team decided to take him off anti-seizure medication and allow his body to handle the seizures on its own. While Tucker still has one to two seizures a year, they are being controlled and managed without medication.
Tucker’s Stollery story didn’t stop there. When he was five-and-a-half years old, he had what appeared to be a stubborn cold – stuffy nose, bloodshot eyes and a fever, combined with a rash on his stomach and chest. After visiting his pediatrician three times in 10 days, his parents decided to take him to the Stollery Emergency department. He was admitted to the Stollery and multiple tests were done while his medical team worked to find a diagnosis. Preemptively Tucker’s team started treating him for Kawasaki disease, an illness that causes swelling and redness in blood vessels throughout the body. Three days later, an echocardiogram confirmed the diagnosis and showed that Tucker also had coronary artery dilation and aneurysms in the artery. Now followed closely by his cardiology team, Tucker takes Aspirin daily to prevent any future heart attacks.
From the Emergency department to neurology and cardiology, Tucker’s family is thankful to have the most specialized children’s hospital in Western Canada right in their backyard.