Arduous routine as Emma copes with illness

Emma Frank

SIX-year-old Emma Frank gets up at 6am to take 10 tablets, complete two sets of physiotherapy, use a nebuliser (a way to administer medication) before taking more tablets.

The youngster was diagnosed with cystic fibrosis when she was three-weeks-old and has to complete a daily routine to help cope with the illness.

Cystic fibrosis caused a thick mucus to form in the lungs and digestive system and affects around 10,500 people in the UK.

Like other people with the condition, Emma is on a range of tablets and sometimes has to go into hospital to have antibiotics through an intravenous line.

Her mum Michelle, from Paulsgrove, said: ‘When Emma was born, she didn’t put her birth weight back on so we took her to the hospital.

‘A heel prick test is done when babies are born and is the most common way of diagnosing cystic fibrosis, the results came back and Emma had it.

‘They were giving me all this information and statistics and I was there holding my baby knowing she was going to die.’

From a young age Emma has been having her treatment of various tablets and physiotherapies, something Michelle said she is well-disciplined in doing.

She also has to take high-calorie shots to keep her weight up.

Michelle, 32, added: ‘Kids with cystic fibrosis are resilient, they have to be.

‘She takes tablets as soon as she wakes up, while at school and before she eats.

‘She also has to keep fit so we have to do all of that too.

‘We have to do so much but it isn’t stopping the cystic fibrosis, it’s just keeping her “well”.’

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