Wednesday, 5 August 2009 14:49 UK


UK: E. coli girl, three, 'much better'

Source of Article:

The parents of a three year old girl who was seriously ill after an E.coli outbreak, have spoken of their relief that she has started to recover.

Abigail Hennessey was on kidney dialysis in hospital after falling ill last week.

Karen Morrisroe-Clutton, 32, remains in a serious condition at Wrexham Maelor Hospital.

The investigation into the outbreak, which may be linked to a Wrexham fish and chip shop, is continuing.

The Llay Fish Bar in Llay, Wrexham has been closed until further notice, while a potential link is investigated.

Jeff and Sarah Hennessey, from Wrexham, said Abigail was seen by the family doctor a number of times after becoming unwell with stomach pains on 19 July.

But her condition deteriorated and she was eventually referred to Wrexham Maelor hospital before being transferred immediately to Alder Hey in Liverpool on 27 July.

She tested positive for E.coli and was placed on dialysis.

"We are very relieved that Abigail is beginning to recover, is off dialysis and is eating and drinking quite well," her parents said in a statement released by the hospital.

"We would like to thank Dr Judd, Dr Jones and all the staff on ward C3 for their excellent care of Abigail during her time at Alder Hey."

Abigail's consultant paediatric nephrologist Dr Caroline Jones added: "Abigail was diagnosed with haemolytic uraemic syndrome secondary to the E.coli infection and which required dialysis for five days.

"She now appears to be making a recovery and her renal function is improving and she no longer requires dialysis. She is feeling much better, is eating well and her energy is returning."

Mrs Hennessey also tested positive for E.coli but without the severity of Abigail's condition.

'Wants to help'

In a statement, the hospital said both mother and daughter ate at the outlet in Wrexham "but cannot be sure that they picked up the infection there and are unwilling to speculate".

Meanwhile, Mrs Morrisroe-Clutton's mother has criticised Wrexham council after its inspection a year ago of the Llay Fish Bar found poor hygiene conditions.

The inspection also found major non-compliance with food legislation and the authority gave its lowest possible star rating of zero stars.

Environmental health inspectors then said they found a shortage of cleaning materials only last week in an inspection ahead of seeking closure of the premises.

Pierre Bartlett, the solicitor for Ramazan Aslan, the owner of the fish bar, said his client was co-operating fully with the investigation and his thoughts were with the families of those who are ill.

He said: "He wants to help them as much as he can. Anyone in the catering industry in the same position would want to help the authorities to do their job."

The National Public Health Service said no new cases of E.Coli have been reported in Wrexham.

A spokeswoman added that a laboratory test to identify the strains involved and identify the source of the outbreak is ongoing, but it could take up to four or five days before the results are known.




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