“Children’s is a great hospital. The staff is truly amazing and everyone was helpful. We’re so grateful to have such a great team treating us.” Mitzi Atkinson, parent
At school, she’s quiet, almost timid. At home, it’s a different story. With her family, 4-year-old Savannah Atkinson is outgoing and even a little bossy—often thinking she rules the house, her mom, Mitzi, said. Creative and inquisitive, Savannah loves to work on puzzles, paint and read. And more than anything, she loves dogs. But getting a puppy was not possible for most of Savannah’s life because of her frequent seizures.
Savannah had her first seizure when she was 11 months old, and doctors told Mitzi and her husband, Trevor, that it was caused by a fever. But their daughter continued to have seizures, and after undergoing tests at Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta, doctors diagnosed Savannah with epilepsy. Medications were having little effect on her and she was, at one point, having 30 to 40 seizures a day—sometimes just five minutes apart.
But all that changed when Mitzi and Trevor took Savannah to the Children’s Ketogenic Diet Clinic. The special high-fat, low-carbohydrate diet has been proven to work well in hard-to-treat epilepsy cases. Savannah stayed at Children’s for two days while staff eased her into the diet and provided her parents with education. The diet worked. She is now seizure-free and her parents are overjoyed. Because of her treatment success, Savannah can now ride a bike and go to school. And, best of all, her dreams finally came true last year when they brought home Max, a Yorkshire terrier puppy.