DAVID Cameron fights back tears as he talks about the night doctors tried desperately to resuscitate his son Ivan.
Speaking in BBC documentary The Cameron Years, the former Prime Minister was emotional as he discussed losing his six-year-old child who was born with severe disabilities.
Mr Cameron said that Ivan – who had a rare form of epilepsy Ohtahara syndrome and died in February 2009 – would sometimes suffer dozens of seizures in a row.
He said: “One night he was particularly bad. There was something that had really gone wrong with him.
“So we all got up in the middle of the night. Samantha went off to the hospital and initially I stayed behind with the other children.
“But I knew something wasn’t right – so I took the risk of leaving the children and rushed off to the hospital.”
Fighting back tears, Cameron continued: “…and he’d had very bad seizures and everything had gone into sort of collapse.
“And the staff were trying to do everything they could to try resuscitate him but they couldn’t.”
The BBC1 documentary included footage of the ex-Tory leader kissing Ivan gently on the forehead.
…he’d had very bad seizures and everything had gone into sort of collapse
He spoke about the “pressure” of caring and loving his disabled son while in 10 Downing Street.
Mr Cameron said: “Ivan would sometimes have dozens of seizures in a row – and you just have to get him to the hospital and get him the right medicines and the right treatments.
“It strengthened us as a couple and a family – we said ‘we’re going to get through this. We are going to manage this, it’s going to be ok.”
Cameron said Ivan’s condition was so rare that “there was barely a diagnosis – yet alone a cure”.
MOST READ IN NEWS
He revealed in The Times how his son underwent numerous, often painful, tests before a diagnosis was made and he was given up to 20 different drugs each day.
Ivan was unable to move his limbs or speak and his only self-conscious movements were to smile and raise his eyebrows.
The Camerons also have two daughters, Nancy and Florence, and a son called Arthur Elwen.
What is Ohtahara syndrome?
- Ohtahara syndrome is rare epileptic condition where seizures typically start before three months of age.
- It affects around one in 500 epileptic sufferers and is caused by an underlying structural brain abnormality.
- This can be caused by brain damage before and around the time of birth, or it can be passed on in the genes.
- Babies can suffer jerking limbs or spasms, and doctors will typically monitor any seizures before making a diagnosis.
- The seizures are often resistant to medicine, and babies will often have little developmental progress.
- Many sufferers die before the age of two from complications such as repeated chest infections.
- Those who survive are typically severely disabled and will experience continued seizures even with treatment.
David Cameron’s son Ivan passed away in 2009 aged just six years old from a condition called Ohtahara syndrome[/caption]
David pictured with wife Samantha, and kids Nancy, Arthur and Ivan[/caption]
Ivan was diagnosed with Ohtahara syndrome, which is a very rare epilepsy syndrome[/caption]
We pay for your stories! Do you have a story for The Sun Online news team? Email us at [email protected] or call 0207 782 4368 . You can WhatsApp us on 07810 791 502. We pay for videos too. Click here to upload yours