Appeal for man with Down's syndrome who faces over a year in hospital

Aidan Smith from Gorleston has Downs syndrome and is facing up to a year in hospital

Aidan Smith, from Gorleston, has a long recovery ahead of him and a fundraiser has been launched to help make his homecoming as joyful as possible. - Credit: supplied by family

A 22-year-old man who suffered a catastrophic collapse faces a long recovery with multiple surgeries and on-going physiotherapy.

Aidan Smith, who has Down's syndrome with complex needs and lives in Gorleston, was rushed to hospital on December 8 having suffered a suspected stroke.

Further tests showed he also had sepsis and pneumonia.

In the early hours of the following day he was rushed to Addenbrooke’s Hospital, Cambridge, where a neurological team was waiting to take him straight into emergency surgery to remove half his skull and relieve the pressure on his brain .

Aidan Smith who has Downs syndrome is facing a huge health challenge

Aidan Smith suffered a stroke and was found to have a host of other problems. He is now able to sit up in a chair but needs help to eat. He faces a long recovery but his family want to make his homecoming special and are hosting a fundraising raffle. - Credit: supplied by family

After his surgery he stayed on the critical care neurological unit until December 23 when he was bought back to Gorleston's JPUH where endocarditis, a heart condition, was identified as the cause of the stroke.

His cousin Samantha Seager, 29, said Aidan has been through the mill and been left with no feeling on his left side.

She said: "He now has to have intensive rehabilitation to gain his mobility back which is going to be a long journey for him.

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"After everything he has been through he still has to go back to Addenbrooke’s Hospital to have a metal plate put in to protect the right side of his brain due to previous surgery. He should be having this done sometime this year depending on his recovery."

Miss Seager said Aidan was well known on the Magdalen Estate where he lives with his mother who is by his bedside 14 hours a day.

She said he had already been in hospital since December 8 and faced another six months to a year on the wards as he waited for transfer to Norwich's Colman Hospital.

She said: "He is very cheeky and really kind. He would do anything for anyone and loves football.

"He has been through a lot in his life but this is his biggest hurdle yet."

The family are staging a grand raffle to raise money to support Aidan and provide special treats for when he comes home having missed Christmas, Easter, his birthday, and numerous family milestones.

Companies, supermarkets and NCFC have already donated prizes.

The raffle will be drawn on April 4 at St Mary's Church on the Magdalen Estate at 1pm when there will be refreshments and an update on Aidan's journey. 

To donate contact Aidan's aunt Rebecca Bland at beccalee2@sky.com