Praise for hospital after frightening Strep A ordeal

by Louise Doyle

A MUM has praised staff of Letterkenny University Hospital for the care shown to her baby daughter who frighteningly developed Strep A following a post chickenpox infection.

Letterkenny parents Elaine and Stephen Doherty will host a fundraising coffee this morning in the Vestry from 10am to 12 noon to pay thanks to and support LUH’s Paediatrics Ward and its staff for their fantastic care to their baby girl, Clara. Little Clara, who is now almost 15 months old, became seriously ill in February and March of this year and had to spend time in both LUH and in Crumlin.


Speaking to the Donegal News, Elaine said: “Clara and her two siblings had had chickenpox. Clara had it for two days and she wasn’t doing too bad with it but on the Sunday I noticed that some of the sores were very red and angry. I rang NowDoc about it and they told me to go to the Emergency Department.”

Clara was initially diagnosed with Cellulitis but blood test results revealed something deeper.

“Blood tests actually confirmed Clara had developed developed Strep A and septicaemia. She was transferred to Crumlin for a week and then she returned to Letterkenny hospital for follow up treatment.

“They told me in Paediatrics that the chickenpox broke her skin barrier and Strep A became so invasive. Strep A can cause just a sore throat but if it goes into the blood stream it can cause septic shock.”

Elaine said that Clara subsequently developed rotavirus, a vomiting bug and had to be readmitted to LUH.

“She was vaccinated against this but her immune system was so low she ended up getting the bug.

“Clara is fully recovered now but has a little bit of scar tissue around her neck, as that was where the primary source of infection was but it is not really visible.”


The couple have set up a fundraiser on Go Fund Me.

“The staff were absolutely brilliant, acting fast and relieving our stress. They liaised with staff in Crumlin to guide Clara’s treatment. They don’t realise how much they helped. They think they are only doing their job but they have a huge impact.”

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