When Alfie Clamp was born blind and with a multitude of disabilities, doctors could not pin-point his particular condition. To their surprise tests revealed that Alfie is the only person in the world to have an extra strand of DNA in his body.
Alfie is two years old and when doctors could not ascertain the cause for his disabilities, they performed various tests. The tests showed what no one expected ever. On the seventh chromosome of his DNA there is a strand of material that has never been documented anywhere in the world. Doctors do not have a name for his condition nor do they know what affect it will have on Alfie in the future.
The toddler’s parents Gemma and Richard Clamp from Nuneaton, Warks had taken their son home for the first time when they noticed something was not right with him. They rushed back to the hospital when he turned blue one day and could not breathe. It was finally when he was six weeks old when doctors discovered his DNA anomaly.
‘When the doctors told us I was absolutely devastated.” said Gemma. “As a pregnant mum you spend nine months thinking about what it will be like when your baby takes their first step or claps their hands. Having a boy like Alfie makes you appreciate the little things. He didn’t roll over until he was 18 months old, but we were so excited when he did.’
Because of his rare condition Alfie could not see until he was three months old. He also could not roll-over on his own. Although the brave toddler can now see, he still has various intestinal problems due to which he has to take medications. These help his body absorb the vital nutrients.
He also has fits which make it difficult for him to eat and drink when associated with the digestion problems and high temperature.
The Clamps have had to take Alfie to the hospital at least six times since his birth and on two occasions they were certain that they had lost their son. But miraculously the toddler recovered completely after each hospital stay.
What puzzles the parents and the doctors more is that the couple do not carry any faulty gene and they already have a healthy 10 year old daughter Georgia.
The couple though are thankful just for the precious son they have.
Says Gemma, “’The doctors told us there is nothing we could have done to prevent it. I don’t think we’ll ever know why it happened. I was holding him in my arms and I could see his eyes start to focus on me. It was a massive milestone for us because we didn’t know if that would ever happen.”
‘We even took a photograph of the two of us sat there, looking at each other. Having Alfie has changed our lives – everything revolves around him. But he is such a happy boy and he has brought a lot of joy to our lives. Whenever we go to hospital, all the doctors and nurses say what a pleasure it is to see Alfie.’
The brave, smiling boy will soon go through surgeries to fix his intestinal problems.
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