Bristol teenager told she may NEVER recover from 'mystery illness'

  • WARNING: GRAPHIC CONTENT Vicky Archer, 15, fell seriously ill following a family holiday to Menorca in August but has only just undergone an MRI scan
  • Bristol student has suffered memory loss, vomiting and swollen limbs  
  • Vicky may spend three months in hospital amid fears she may never recover
  • Parents are looking into a possible hydrocarbon leak off the Menorcan coast

A 15-year-old girl suffering from a mystery condition that has left her with a string of health problems has been told she may never fully recover.

Vicky Archer’s body has been ravaged by the unidentified illness since returning from a family holiday in Menorca in September, leaving her with a full-body rash and suffering from severe memory loss.

But despite undergoing a full-body MRI scan this week, doctors are still baffled as to what is causing the student from Yate, Bristol, to suffer from a painful, itchy rash and bleeding from the mouth.

 Vicky fell seriously ill following a family holiday to Menorca and her parents initially believed her mystery illness could have been caused by a mosquito bite. 

However now her mother Alison and father Michael, 52,  are trying to find out more about a hydrocarbon leak in the sea near where they were staying, where dead fish were seen floating in the sea. 

Vicky Archer has been left with a painful rash and suffering from severe memory loss, but despite undergoing a full-body MRI scan doctors are still baffled as to its cause

Vicky Archer has been left with a painful rash and suffering from severe memory loss, but despite undergoing a full-body MRI scan doctors are still baffled as to its cause

The mystery illness, which has left Vicky covered in a painful, itchy rash, bleeding from the mouth, confused and suffering memory loss - even struggling to recognise her mother

The mystery illness, which has left Vicky covered in a painful, itchy rash, bleeding from the mouth, confused and suffering memory loss – even struggling to recognise her mother

Vicky has been seriously ill in hospital for more than ten weeks and finally had a full-body MRI scan on Monday, after it was postponed by the hospital.

But baffled doctors remain unable to diagnose her terrifying condition – and have no idea what caused it.

They told Alison that Vicky is likely to spend the next two or three months in hospital and take up to two years to get better, but may never fully recover.

When a scan due to take place on November 29 was pushed back to this week because of ‘overcrowding’, Vicky’s desperate mother Alison, 45, decided to release the shocking photographs of their daughter’s symptoms in a bid to get some answers.

Alison and Mike Archer with (l-r) Harry, eight, Vicky, 16, and Sophie, 11. The desperate mother is appealing for help to cure her teenage daughter of her ongoing mystery illness

Alison and Mike Archer with (l-r) Harry, eight, Vicky, 16, and Sophie, 11. The desperate mother is appealing for help to cure her teenage daughter of her ongoing mystery illness

While Alison initially believed the illness could have been cause by a mosquito bite, she and her husband Michael, 52, say they are now trying to find out more about a hydrocarbon leak in the sea near where they were staying, where dead fish were seen floating in the sea.

Since sharing shocking photos of her daughter, mum-of-three Alison, a carer, and IT manager Michael have been sent dozens of possible diagnoses.

Suggestions include Dengue Fever and malaria, but medics are treating her for autoimmune encephalitis, the name for a group of neuro-psychiatric conditions.

The family believe Vicky’s condition could also have been triggered by a mosquito bite she suffered on a family holiday to Menorca in August, which has since flared up.

After sharing these shocking photos of her daughter, mum-of-three Alison, a carer, and IT manager Michael, have been sent dozens of possible diagnoses

After sharing these shocking photos of her daughter, mum-of-three Alison, a carer, and IT manager Michael, have been sent dozens of possible diagnoses

The rash has covered Vicky's entire body. Possible explanations include Dengue Fever and malaria, but medics are treating her for  a group of neuro-psychiatric conditions

The rash has covered Vicky’s entire body. Possible explanations include Dengue Fever and malaria, but medics are treating her for a group of neuro-psychiatric conditions

Vicky has been left bleeding from the mouth as a result of her illness. Her parents are now trying to find out more about a hydrocarbon leak in the sea near where they were staying

Vicky has been left bleeding from the mouth as a result of her illness. Her parents are now trying to find out more about a hydrocarbon leak in the sea near where they were staying

Alison said: ‘Vicky is likely to be in hospital for next two or three months, possibly taking up to two years to recover, however, she may not make a full recovery.

‘It’s very much a wait and see situation. My husband and I are still obviously worried about her condition. She has a long way to go yet.’

Alison said that Bristol Children’s Hospital, where Vicky is being treated, have tested for a range of conditions.

They are treating her for autoimmune encephalitis, which was first diagnosed in 2007 and can cause loss of consciousness, cognitive decline and seizures.

Alison added: ‘Neurology consultants say in ten years’ time they will know more about autoimmune encephalytis and the antibodies involved.

‘Therefore we may not get a conclusive result however, from Vicky’s symptoms they are convinced that she has autoimmune encephalytis and are treating her for this.

Devastating new: 'Vicky is likely to be in hospital for next two or three months, possibly taking up to two years to recover, however, she may not make a full recovery,' said her mother Alison

Devastating new: ‘Vicky is likely to be in hospital for next two or three months, possibly taking up to two years to recover, however, she may not make a full recovery,’ said her mother Alison

The rash on Vicky's hand. The A-star student has been seriously ill for more than ten weeks and finally had a full-body MRI scan on Monday, after it was postponed by the hospital

The rash on Vicky’s hand. The A-star student has been seriously ill for more than ten weeks and finally had a full-body MRI scan on Monday, after it was postponed by the hospital

‘Cause unknown at present, I now feel that it is unlikely we will pinpoint the cause.

‘I find it too coincidental that what she said was a mosquito bite did not disappear and she had it flare up twice while she was ill in hospital.’

Speaking of the possible hydrocarbon leak, she added: ‘My husband and Vicky have been swimming in the area by the hotel in previous years and not seen dead fish there before.

‘It was only on this occasion when they were snorkeling that they noticed the dead fish.

‘We just don’t know what has caused Vicky’s illness and we’re just enquiring as to whether anyone else had information about the hydrocarbon leak in the sea.

Vicky even spent her 16th birthday recovering in hospital. Her mother Alison said: 'We're enquiring as to whether anyone else had information about the hydrocarbon leak in the sea'

Vicky even spent her 16th birthday recovering in hospital. Her mother Alison said: ‘We’re enquiring as to whether anyone else had information about the hydrocarbon leak in the sea’

‘We googled and discovered the leak may take weeks to clear in the sea and can be carried by the tide.’

Vicky’s condition has left her with severe memory loss – unable to recognise her mum, tell left from right or do simple tasks like swallowing food and reading.

Vicky began showing signs that something was wrong in early September after getting home from Menorca on August 22.

She started suffering from sleep problems, wet the bed, became less coherent in her speech and started acting out of character, Alison said. 

Vicky has been left in excruciating pain. She first began showing signs that something was wrong in early September after getting home from Menorca on August 22

Vicky has been left in excruciating pain. She first began showing signs that something was wrong in early September after getting home from Menorca on August 22

Usually an A-star student, the teen was even kept behind after a class for disrupting a lesson – something she would never do.

By mid-September she had developed a sensitivity to light and noise, her eyelids were fluttering and she had gone ‘a bit doolally’.

She was admitted to hospital on September 21 after her concerned mum took her to the GP and they advised her to go to A&E.

Since then, she has lost more than a stone, is covered from head to toe in a rash and her 15th birthday on October 22 was spent in isolation.

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