Evelina Hospital logo

Katie Braybrook's blog

Age 16
TextBlog (2)
Open quotation marks

My name’s Katie and I’m 16 years old. I am currently a patient at Evelina London and have been under their care since I was 12 years old. 

To celebrate the 150th birthday of Evelina London, I am writing to tell you all my experience of being a patient and the amazing care I received!

When I was 12, I was diagnosed with scoliosis. For those of you who may not know what scoliosis is, it is a curvature of the spine. Unfortunately, I had a double curve, which basically meant my spine was a bit like an ‘S’ shape. I was then referred to the specialist spinal team at Evelina London, where it was decided that I needed to be regularly monitored at intervals of around every six months. If the curves reached a certain degree, I was told that I may need to undergo major surgery on my spine. Unfortunately, X-Rays revealed that both curves in my spine had got worse with one curve reaching over 50 degrees. This meant that I had to be put on a waiting list to undergo surgery, which was a very scary prospect. In January 2017, I underwent spinal fusion surgery to correct my Scoliosis. This involved placing titanium rods and screws along my spine to straighten it. 

I stayed on Savannah ward as an inpatient for around a week. It was a very difficult recovery but all the nurses were lovely and took great care of me, they became almost like friends to me.  

I remember the first time I stood up and walked after my surgery. It was extremely painful and felt strange since my spine had been straightened which was a new position for me, but every day with the help of the physiotherapists and nurses, I was able to walk a little bit further and even climb some stairs! 

The care I received from all of the spinal team was amazing, so I decided that I wanted to say thank you to the hospital that helped me so much. The first thing I did was a sponsored haircut. I cut off around 10 inches of my hair, which I donated to the Little Princess Trust (who make wigs for children who’ve lost their hair due to cancer treatment) and raised £680 for Evelina London. I have also given public talks at various events where I have raised awareness of Evelina and the amazing work they carry out every day, including two Inspiring Youth Conferences held at the hospital, a charity gala in London where I presented to over 300 people and at a Christmas event for St Thomas’ Hospital and Evelina London, which was held in a cathedral. This was out of my comfort zone but something I am very proud to have achieved! 

I am also a member of the Youth Forum where I attend meetings with other young people, we discuss projects that we believe will help other patients coming to the hospital.

Aside from my charity work with Evelina London, which I thoroughly enjoy, I also love to be creative and my hobbies include: drawing, baking and making videos/animations, including this one I have made specially to celebrate Evelina London’s 150th birthday!

I would love to work at Evelina London in the future as it’s a very special place to me!  Although I’m not entirely sure which job I would like to do, I am interested in a few different roles, one of which is marketing, as I love designing things. 

I would like to take this opportunity to say a massive THANK YOU to all of the incredible staff that looked after me including the nurses on Savannah ward, my specialist spinal nurse Rachel and my surgeon Mr Lucas, I am extremely grateful to you all.

Finally, a piece of advice that I’d give to other patients who may be under the care of Evelina London is the following: never give up, don’t let your medical condition stop you from achieving your goals because you can achieve anything you put your mind to! 

Closing quotations marks

Thank you for reading!

Katie x

Caring for children and young people like Katie for 150 years

We are celebrating young people's voices as part of our 150th birthday celebrations. Find out more about our plans to celebrate this special anniversary.

Have you had amazing treatment at Evelina London?

Find out how to nominate a member of staff or a team to be our Evelina 150 Stars.

See our winners.

Support us in our birthday year

Find out more about Challenge 150.

Read more blogs

See all our "You've got this" blogs, written by our patients in celebration of our 150th anniversary.
©  Guy's and St Thomas' NHS Foundation Trust.
King's Health Partners logo