My Children and I


All original content copyright Emma4facs 2012 – 2014 x

me and the kiddies on holiday x x x x x

me and the kiddies on holiday x x x x x

Im Emma age 32 from Manchester. My profession is a Nursery Nurse and I’m mum to Chloe (10) Lauren(9) Luke(8) Erin(6) and Kian (4)

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I was diagnosed with Epilepsy aged 12 having suffer regular seizures both Grand Mal/ Tonic Clonic and abscent seizures. I was medicated with the medication Epilim (Sodium Valproate) download
The advice given to me by my Neurologist, was always to take my medication as this would help control my seizures, so trusting the experts always done so. When I first got pregnant with my daughter, my husband and I decided to have my ante-natel care at my local hospital as that was also where my Neurologist was based. Throughout all my pregnancies my medical team were aware I was on Epilim, and the advice my husband and I was given, was to carry on taking my medication and to increase my dosage of Folic Acid.

me and Kian

The children were all born, over a period of 5 years however with them all they always seemed to be ill, were never reaching milestones, had delayed speech etc.

Laurens 1st bath - weighing3lb

Laurens 1st bath – weighing3lb

I was convinced something wasn’t right. It didn’t seem right that all my babies were showing signs of illness, delayed milestones etc. When I was pregnant with my 1st daughter my mum passed away very suddenly aged 42. I was devastated by this and was very quickly diagnosed with depression. Having lost my mum the GPs, Health Visitors etc thought I was being paranoid, over protective mum when I would voice my concerns over the kids. I was always being reassured the children were fine and they would catch up.

My family x x x x

My family x x x x

One day I saw on the news a lady talking about the dangers of Epilim in Pregnancy, how whilst pregnant it could affect the baby, which could result in the baby having a condition called FACS (Fetal Anti Convulsant Syndrome) I was speechless watching this. I knew there and then, the children had this condition. It was as if a light had been switched on, everything the lady was saying was exactly what I had been saying for years. I rang the news immediately and was put in touch with Janet Williams. To cut a very long story short after months of tests, Drs appointments my children were diagnosed with FACS SYNDROME – the medicine I was prescribed HAD affected my babies. As well as the diagnosis of FACS, my children also went onto obtain diagnosis of ;

Lauren on her Kaye Walker

Lauren on her Kaye Walker

• Facial Dysmorphic Features
• Cerebral Palsy
• Incontinence
• Valgus Foot
• Hypermobility
• Speech & Language Delay
• Autisic behaviour/Dyspraxia
• Athsma
• Noise Intolerance
• Deafness and more

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In November 2013, along with Janet Williams I Co-Founded FACSA – a parent/family support group for families affected by Epilim and other Anti Convulsant medicines. At the same time we also started campaigning in Government and have since been named as Government Campaign Group for Epilim (IN-FACT)

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Vital Knowledge for you to read http://facsa.org.uk/vital-knowledge/
Our official campaign page is http://www.facsa.org.uk

Manchester Evening News

Manchester Evening News

17 thoughts on “My Children and I

  1. Thank you do much for raising awareness. Although I had heard of this, I didn’t really know anything about it. I’m shocked at how easily it can be passed on.
    What an amazing mum you must be for looking after such a big family & finding the time to raise awareness. You’re quite an inspiration!

    Xxx

  2. I found your blog through Susie’s #FF today. I have never heard of this syndrome but I can see how it can affect foetal development.

    I’m going to take some time to read more about it x.

  3. So you have four children with disabilities due to the FACS syndrome as you found out too late, but what about the fifth? Are they OK? Did you have them before or after you found out? Sorry to ask, it just isn’t clear. I am so sorry to hear about this, it never ceases to amaze me how often we are not told of dangers surrounding our meds – does it not say anything on the med leaflets? Are they changing the way they tell people of dangers now? My brother is now epileptic due to a rare side effect from an anti-biotic – the hospital gave it to him without the leaflet so he had no chance of reading about the possibility. Mind you, he was in so much pain with a tumor I expect he would have still taken them – but at least it would have been his choice. 😦

    • Thanks for reading Amanda. My 5th child is affected too. It wasn’t a planned pregnancy. I found out about FACS on the news when I was 7 month pregnant with my 4TH child. IF I hadn’t have seen the news that day I’d be none the wiser. No warnings throughout my pregnancies at all. Shocking that in today’s society this can happen. X

  4. What a terrible thing, I am so sorry! You must be such a remarkable person to be able to deal with five kids AND keep up the fight. Big hug from Spain (came hear via the mummys little monkey blog 😉

    • Thank you Victoria, my National Campaign is all about raising and bringing forward awareness of this so ladies can make an informed choice. I was never given that choice but can help put the message across .

  5. I also have five children, I can’t imagine how much harder it must be for you to have all five with additional needs. Out of curiosity, is there another medication that can be taken that may not have these side affects? I take statins due to a hereditary type of high cholesterol I have to stop taking them completely three months before even trying for a baby and whilst breastfeeding, there are no other options. I was wondering if this was the same with epilepsy medication but obviously you can’t just stop taking your medication.
    ell done on what you have achieved so far and good luck

    • Awwwww thank you. I couldn’t sit back knowing this happens and not do anything about it. If Government and Department of Health won’t warn ladies I will #pocolo x x

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