Boy's five year cough was a mystery for doctors until they make gross discovery
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Marley, from Adelaide, first began suffering with respiratory symptoms as a toddler and was initially diagnosed with asthma, but his mum, Skye Enjakovic, wasn’t convinced.
She continued to seek further medical assistance, but for five years was unable to get to the truth of what was plaguing her young son.
Marley's dad, Jay Enjakovic, said Marley's issues impacted his ability to join in sports and keep food down, telling the Today Show: "With Marley in the last few years playing a lot of sport and football and basketball, it slowly went downhill pretty quick.
"He couldn’t run out his games, coughing a lot more, bringing a lot of food up, bringing water up every time he ate.
“That’s when Skye and I really pressed and pushed and asked more questions. We really wanted an answer because we had a feeling it was not asthma," he continued.
Marley's cough began to get worse in December 2021, so much so that it could last for hours on end or force him to throw up. He was rushed to the Women’s and Children’s hospital one day as he struggled to breathe, but his lungs were so inflamed that doctors couldn't see the cause of the issue.
He was admitted to the intensive care unit, where he underwent surgery. In the process, doctors discovered a small plastic flower, the type used in arts and crafts, lodged in Marley's throat.
Enjakovic told Sunrise she was 'absolutely shocked' at the discovery, but also 'really relieved' she finally had an answer.
She continued: “My main concern at that point in time was that he was actually born with that condition. Because if he was born with it, he would have had other issues.
"To know it was caused by a foreign body, it was a slight bit of relief for me."
Though doctors were successfully able to remove the toy, Marley’s symptoms ended up returning due to damage to his oesophagus.
He was taken to hospital and had to be placed on a feeding tube for four months, but now is now set to undergo surgery to repair the damage.
After years of not knowing, Enjakovic is now using her experience to urge other parents to speak up if they believe something is wrong with their children.
“My message to other parents is that if you feel like there is something wrong, just keep pushing for it. I am so glad I did because it means I have him today,” Enjakovic said.
Marley and his family have now established a fundraiser for the Women’s & Children’s Hospital Foundation, with a goal of $2,000 aiming to 'positively impact the health and wellbeing of women, children, and their families at the Women’s and Children’s Hospital'.