Heart failure fears for McKenzie Kimpton as he refuses to take his medicine
A BOY who survived a nine-hour heart operation could die because he refuses to take his medicine, say his worried parents.
McKenzie Kimpton, 4, was rushed to Leeds General Infirmary on Tuesday afternoon after suffering chest pain.
His parents, Emma Jones and Sam Kimpton – who were last night keeping a bedside vigil – say their son has a phobia of his medication.
It is hoped McKenzie, who underwent surgery two weeks ago, will be allowed to return to his east Hull home today.
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But doctors have warned his parents their son's heart is likely to fail if he continues to refuse medicine designed to slow down his rapid heart rate.
Emma, 22, said: "Doctors have told us McKenzie will end up in intensive care if he doesn't take his tablets.
"Worst-case scenario, they have told us, is that he will die."
Earlier this week, the Mail told how doctors had given McKenzie only a 20 per cent chance of surviving the surgery.
He is one of only 20 people in Europe to suffer from a little-known defect called Alcapa. It means his heart does not get enough oxygenated blood.
Surgeons believe they have fixed the main vessel to his heart, which will prolong his life.
However, his family will have to wait until next month for scan results before they know for sure if the procedure has been a success.
In the latest setback, McKenzie's grandfather Glyn Jones drove him to hospital after the little boy complained of severe pain in his chest.
"His lips turned blue and he was very pale," said Emma.
"He was also very cold to touch, even though it has been really warm these past few days.
"Obviously, we were really worried about him, so I rang Leeds General Infirmary and they told us to bring him in straight away."
McKenzie was in so much pain, he was asking for pain relief, say his family.
Tests have showed McKenzie's pulse is too high, putting him at extreme risk of heart failure.
Emma said: "His heart is working too hard. The medicine slows the heart rate but we are having problems making him take it."
Because of the delicate operation, his parents cannot risk injuring him by physically making him take the pill. They have also attempted to disguise the pill in food, but to no avail.
Emma said: "We are working with the hospital to find an answer."
Well-wishers have raised thousands of pounds for McKenzie and it is hoped the money will be used to pay for a family break if he regains strength.
Emma said: "It has been a real comfort knowing people care.
"We are just trying to stay as positive as we can for McKenzie."