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The Post brings festive cheers to Port Talbot-based Abigail Harvey

By South Wales Evening Post  |  Posted: December 13, 2012

By Liz Perkins

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THE Evening Post has been bringing the festive spirit to eight-year-old Abigail Harvey after ill-health led to her missing out on a special celebration.

The youngster, who is eight but is the size of a one-year-old, had been handed an invite to the Post's Christmas Cheer party because of the way she stays so happy despite the challenges she faces.

But Abigail, who is living with mucolipidosis type 2 — a genetic condition that affects every structure in her body, missed out on the star-studded party as she suddenly had to be taken into hospital.

Her mum Pauline Harvey, 40, of Duffryn Rhondda near Port Talbot, said Abigail had to be cared for at the University Hospital of Wales in Cardiff for nearly a fortnight.

But the youngster was absolutely thrilled to be given a special gift along with her six-year-old sister Jennifer.

Mrs Harvey said: "Abigail was in hospital for two weeks.

"She came down with a cold and was feeling lethargic.

"We have a Nippy ventilator which she is on overnight for obstruction and apnea.

"We had to have the machine on during the day time.

"She was also put on a saturation monitor that measures her oxygen levels.

"It went to the 90 per cent mark on the monitor which is the trigger for her to go into hospital, so we had to give her medicine.

"Abigail developed a temperature at this point so we thought it was a chest infection."

She added: "We phoned an ambulance and the crew were superb.

"We have a special protocol in place for her to go straight to University Hospital of Wales in Cardiff."

Mrs Harvey said it was the first time Abigail had to be taken into A&E.

Doctors found that she had bronchiolitis along with the seasonal respiratory virus — RSV.

Mrs Harvey said: "It was a worrying time — the last time she was ill like that she was four years ago when she was in intensive care for six weeks and was in hospital for six months.

"I'm glad she's home now."

She added that Abigail and Jennifer were both disappointed to miss out on seeing the man in red at the Christmas Cheer party which was held at the Mercure Swansea Hotel.

"Both of them are really excited about getting the presents but they were upset they didn't get to meet Santa," she added.

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