Munching on a pizza, or just playing around with his brothers and sisters, Bradley Law seems like any other happy 4 year old.
But, unlike most youngsters, Bradley suffers from a rare immune system disorder that makes just being a kid much more challenging.
“Any time he falls, we need to make sure it’s cleaned. Any time there’s an open wound, we need to make sure it’s cleaned. To bleach the bath tub. Just tactics to make sure he’s not getting another staph infection,” explained Bradley’s mother, Allison.
Bradley is also more prone to pneumonia, ear and sinus infections and infections that target the digestive and respiratory systems.
Allison knew her little boy had unique medical problems early on.
She said Bradley was always sick as an infant and had to hospitalized at the age of 4 months.
“I called the pediatrician on a Saturday in tears and was like, ‘Something’s wrong, we’ve tried every medicine under the sun, we’ve gone through this 20 days at a time, something’s not right,’ and that’s when the referral was made to immunology and infectious disease to find out what’s going on.”
In February of 2018, Bradley was diagnosed with common variable immunodeficiency or CVID.
Now, once a month, he comes to the Connecticut Children’s Medical Center for treatment.
The treatment that allows Bradley to stay an active little boy is made up of antibodies from 10,000 blood donors.
“There are different parts of blood that is used for different things, it’s just that I can’t stress enough the importance of it,” Allison stated.
That’s really something to think about for people considering going to the American Red Cross and donating blood. The need is great, and those donations both save lives and improve the quality of life for tens of thousands like Bradley.
“Every two seconds, someone in the U.S. needs blood,” explained Stephanie Arcangelo with the American Red Cross.
Arcangelo said it’s important to remember that real people like little Bradley benefit when you donate.
“Your blood donations do go to help people like Bradley and thousands of other victims of car accidents or cancer patients and those with other diseases. On the outside, you may not see that they need blood you might not think so, but they need blood,” she said.
Bradley’s sister, Grace, has also recently been diagnosed with CVID, but doctors still haven’t determined a plan her treatment.
But, thanks to modern medicine and the willingness of blood donors, the future for Grace and Bradley are as bright as their sparkling personalities.
“When this started, Scott and I were in fear of what we were up against. It was the fear of the unknown. ‘Is my child going to look different?’ And it quickly became, ‘we have a plan and this is working.’ Bradley lives a life no different than any other child. He’s enrolled in soccer, he has brothers and sisters, he’s wild and crazy.”