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Norwich boy’s type 1 diabetes misdiagnosed as ‘teething problems’

A woman has found relief after her son was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes, meaning that his dramatic weight loss was not due to “teething problems”.

In February 2020, Kerry Bowyer noticed that Zach, her baby boy, seemed unwell.

“He deteriorated over a two-week period. He was eating fine but then one day he just drank around 14 pints of milk, but no food. Then he stopped eating altogether and lost a ridiculous amount of weight,” she told Evening News 24.

A GP told Kerry that this was due to her son having teething problems, yet when Zach began to lose more weight, she visited other medical practises to find the answer.

Kerry explained: “I was watching him wither away. I knew there was no way that teething could be this bad, it was so extreme.

“Then I noticed his breathing wasn’t normal and I just knew there had to be something more to it.”

Zach was finally diagnosed with diabetes at the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital (NNUH).

Kerry said: “When the doctor said it could be (type one) diabetes, I knew it was that straight away. His dad is type one diabetic. I was mostly relieved when we found out what it was because as soon as you have an answer you know what you’re dealing with and how to fix it.”

“I don’t blame anybody that they didn’t get it right straight away but if left any longer it could have been a different story.”

Zach had only spent four days at the NNUH and had been given a blood glucose monitor before COVID-19 brought his progress to a standstill.

Kerry elaborated: “Medication was delayed and getting his insulin pump fitted took longer than normal because there was a waiting list prior to lockdown as well as afterwards.”

After two years, Zach who is now three years old, had his pump fitted and will only attend a check-up every three months.

When talking about how proud she was of Zach, Kerry said: “He’s been an absolute star and makes me so proud how he deals with it all. He just goes with the flow through everything and has an incredible personality.”

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