London Sharwood, from the Byron Shire, potentially faces months of recovery after being bitten by a tiger snake.
London Sharwood, from the Byron Shire, potentially faces months of recovery after being bitten by a tiger snake.

11-year-old’s brave fight after snake bite

A BYRON girl bitten by a tiger snake in her backyard is fighting every day to get back to her normal bubbly self by weening herself off heavy sedative drugs.

While London Sharwood's determination to bounce back will be a lengthy process, doctors are astounded with her recovery since she was admitted into the Queensland Children's hospital last month.

The 11-year-old was flown to the ICU after she was bitten by the tiger snake in her family's chicken pen days before she was due to graduate from Goonengerry Public School.

London's mother, Renee Sharwood, said her daughter remained in good spirits despite the long and tiring journey to recovery ahead of them.

"She is on the mend, all of her numbers are moving forward, and she's been detoxing this week but she's still really ill," Ms Sharwood said.

"She's doing her exercises and blowing her physiotherapists away.

"But there's still a long way to go."

After coming out of an induced coma, Ms Sharwood said one of the first things London communicated with her doctors was a handwritten note asking to be taken off the sedatives.

"She's given us no choice," Ms Sharwood said.

"She didn't want to go any slower (with recovery), she wants her body back, she wants to drink a cup of tea, she wants to swim and swallow a cup of water."

London remains on full-time ventilation and continues to have daily dialysis to keep her kidneys strong after the toxins from the snake bite caused severe damage.

Ms Sharwood said with the advice of doctors, her daughter started to be weaned off certain sedative drugs, including Fentanyl, Methadone and Diazepam.

"She wasn't able to see or focus and read anything," Ms Sharwood said.

"It's a good effort for her as she's starting to get a lot of awake time.

"We're trying to divert her mind at the moment as she's got a long recovery.

"She's such an overachiever, anything puts her heart into it achieves.

"But she doesn't have that freedom which is frustrating her.

"She can't control her kidneys and she won't be able to leave the ICU for another month."

The community has rallied around London and her family, and GoFundMe has been set up to assist them with the costs involved for them with London's immediate hospital treatment and into her longer-term recovery.

To date, $15,000 has been raised with a goal of $22,000 to assist with any financial issues that might come along.

"The community support has been amazing, everyone's been filling up the freezer with food and running my other kids around," Ms Sharwood said.

"I can't be thankful enough, we don't' know what she's going to need and having that funding when the credit card maxed out just was a relief.

"It's blown us away, I've never been exposed to such love that aren't even family and it's really contributed to the way she's recovered."

London is enrolled to start Byron High School next year and hopes to be ready for the first day of school.

Visit Help London recover from Tiger snake bite to donate.


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