Second chance: WIS viewers help save Baby Jackson’s life

COLUMBIA, SC (WIS) - It was about a year and a half ago when we first reported on a Midlands boy who suffers from a very rare form of Epilepsy, which causes him to have more than 200 seizures a day.

Baby Jackson Patterson's mom heard there was a specialist in Cincinnati, Ohio who could help treat him.

Thanks to a fundraiser rummage sale and donations from WIS viewers, Jackson's mom was able to take him to Ohio in hopes of getting relief from those seizures.

"If you've never seen it before, it's like someone's being electrocuted," said Amanda Patterson. "It's like someone's hitting him on the head with life support heart paddles. It completely picks his body up off the bed."

Now, Jackson is 20-months-old and back home in Columbia.

Most of the time Jackson keeps his head up, unlike many toddlers learning to talk and play, Jackson requires a therapist and a lot of work.

"We're laying down neural connections and neural pathways and its yielded great results," said Jackson's speech therapist. "That's how we've gotten this far."

The fact that Jackson can play and respond to commands is a bit of a miracle. In 2011, after having two strokes at 4-months-old, his family was given little hope.

Until WIS viewers helped support a yard sale to send Jackson to a doctor in Cincinnati who specializes in Infantile Spasms one of the four types of Epilepsy Jackson has.

"The people who gave their money and time, saved Jackson's life," said Amanda. "That's the bottom line."

Cincinnati turned things around for Jackson.

Just to give you an idea of how far Jackson has come, you can barely tell when he's having a seizure.  That's how mild his seizures have become and that's how well he can now handle them.

"We were between 250 and 300 seizures a day and we are now between 10 and 20 seizures a day," said Amanda. "So we've come a very long way."

And not just with the seizures.

Jackson's now working on maximizing what vision he still has, and he's beginning to make sounds for letters M and B with the help of his therapist.

And because Jackson exceeded his goals, the future is hard to predict.

"He was put here for a great purpose," Amanda added. "We don't know what that purpose is, but he is going to define greatness."

A walk is scheduled in honor of Jackson on November 10th.

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