Mum’s plea for sick tot

A MOTHER from Huntingdon is appealing for desperately-needed funds to send her sick 19-month-old daughter abroad for specialist treatment. Toddler Violet Coleman was born 14 weeks prematurely and has a swallowing/feeding disorder that means she has not ye

A MOTHER from Huntingdon is appealing for desperately-needed funds to send her sick 19-month-old daughter abroad for specialist treatment.

Toddler Violet Coleman was born 14 weeks prematurely and has a swallowing/feeding disorder that means she has not yet learnt how to eat.

Instead, mum Sherri has to watch as her only daughter, who weighs just 16lb 5oz, is fed via a feeding pump into her stomach.

The 31-year-old single mum, of Frobisher Close, told The Hunts Post she is desperate for her daughter to get well and has found a treatment that may help.

"It breaks my heart that I am unable to provide for my little girl," she said. "All I want is to be able to give my daughter a happy and normal life - as any parent would."

Sherri has been told by doctors that Violet's eating disorder will not be treated on the NHS until she is older. This is to wait and see if she will begin eating on her own.

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Currently Violet is fed through a stomach pump for up to eight hours every day.

On her first birthday, Violet was fitted with a gastro-tube to aid her feeding, but her health has suffered other setbacks. In February this year, she was taken to Hinchingbrooke Hospital, in Huntingdon, with pneumonia.

However, after seeing a TV documentary, Sherri believes that flying her daughter to Austria for treatment is the best way to ensure her well-being.

The cost of travel and treatment as an inpatient at the specialist hospital in Graz is approximately £12,000. The feeding clinic is a specialist in helping children learn how to eat.

Violet is booked into the clinic for three weeks in November but Sherri says that she cannot meet the costs on her own.

Sherri said: "I cannot 'wait and see' if my daughter gets better. I want her to have the very best treatment available."

A spokesman for Cambridgeshire Primary Care Trust said: "The condition Violet is experiencing is rare but not unknown and tends to improve over time.

"We have asked Violet's mother to share information on the Austrian unit with us, so we can determine whether comparable treatments are offered anywhere in the UK."

INFORMATION: Any individual or business who may be able to offer help to Violet through donations should contact The Hunts Post newsdesk on 01480 411481.

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