A 14-year-old dancer who auditioned for Britain’s Got Talent has been struck down with a rare condition which means she faints every time she stands up.
Faith Morris went from living an active life to being confined to a wheelchair in June last year.
In 2014 she auditioned for Britain’s Got Talent with her dance group called Eclipse and had a promising career ahead of her.
But now Faith faces spending her life in a wheelchair after being diagnosed with Postural Tachycadia Syndrome (PoTS).
It means every time she stands, her heart rate speeds up, causing her to pass out.
Faith was diagnosed with the condition after she fainted during a parents’ evening last year.
As a result, Faith can only stand up if she does it extremely slowly, but is forced to use a wheelchair for most of her lessons at school.
Mum-of-three Lakami Seaman, 39, of Kidderminster, Worcs., said: “We had a hellish month trying to figure out what was wrong with Faith.
“We were at a parents’ evening at her school when we first realised she had something wrong with her.
“We had been there for a while and were walking around.
“Someone had tapped me on the shoulder and told me it looks like Faith was going to faint.
“We took her outside so she could get some air and then home she seemed better after some food.
“Me and Faith had gone to go see a play about the Little Mermaid later that evening.
“She didn’t even get to her seat before she fainted.
“We took her to the GP and they checked her out.
“They gave her some antibiotics as they thought it was just a chest infection.
“A month later and she was still bad so I took her to Worcester Royal Hospital.
“I thought she might have had glaucoma fever.
“Every time she stood up her heart rate would rise.
“The paediatrician went to the cardiologist and told them about Faith’s symptoms and they were the one who told us about this condition.
“She went into the hospital on June 22 and three days later is when they diagnosed her with Postural Tachycardia Syndrome.
“They didn’t seem to have any information on this condition it was new to them and to us.
“They just printed off information from the internet and discharged her.
“We’re just trying to get our heads around it.
“We did some research on it and found gravity causes blood to pool in her feet when she stands, leading to heart palpitations, dizziness and fainting.
“I had to give up on work to look after her I was a cleaner at a care home.
“It’s been awful and difficult everything has changed for her.
“She was diagnosed when she was 13.
“We can’t plan anything as you don’t know how she’s going to be feeling that day.
“We’ve just muddled through.
“She didn’t go back to school until September and now she’s only doing an hour a day.
“If she’s standing, sitting up or travelling in the car, she faints.
“She does on an hour at school in the library, only recently has she gone into the classroom.
“I drive her close the school and then she will get out and try to walk the rest of the way.
“This condition took her independence away.
“She’s worried about missing out on being a normal teenager.
“She can’t dance anymore.
“She can’t cope with a shower so she has to have baths now.
“When we go out she will use her wheelchair.
“If she feels funny, she will need to lie down for a bit.
“I’ll ask her if she is ok when we are out and about.
“She will now avoid things that she knows will make her ill.
“She just paces herself through the days now.
“She went for an audition in 2014 for Britain’s Got Talent.
“She was part of a dance group called Eclipse.
“She used to do after school sports.
“She was a promising dancer, it’s what she wanted to purse as a career.”
Faith said: “It’s quite lonely because everyone else is doing stuff that I can’t do. I really miss dancing but whenever I stand up I just feel really dizzy.
“I just hope that one day I’ll be able to get back to dancing but at the moment I’m just trying to get used to living with the condition.”
Postural Tachycardia Syndrome (PoTS) can be a life altering and debilitating chronic health condition.
Just standing up can be a challenge for people with PoTS as their body is unable to adjust to gravity.
The condition is characterised by orthostatic intolerance – the development of symptoms when upright that are relieved by lying down.
Symptoms include headaches, fatigue, palpitations, sweating, nausea, fainting and dizziness.
They are associated with an increase in heart rate from the lying to upright position of greater than 30 beats per minute, or a heart rate of greater than 120 beats per minute within ten minutes of standing.
For more information: http://www.potsuk.org/