Published Friday, 21 September 2012
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Bailey Collins, from Bangor in Co Down, developed a life-threatening bacterial form of the illness in January.
It didn't prove fatal, however it was only when the youngster came home that his family discovered that he had lost his hearing.
"Well he just wasn't responding to any noises the doorbell ringing, the dog barking, whenever we spoke to him he didn't turn round or anything and we knew obviously that there was something wrong," explained Fiona Collins, Bailey's nana.
"So Bailey did then get a number of quite extensive hearing tests which confirmed he was profoundly deaf, which is one of the side effects of this dreadful illness."
Because of problems with his speech and balance, Bailey wasn't able to start primary school this month.
Karen Close, Bailey's granny, said: "It has completely changed him, he has behaviour problems, his balance - he wasn't able to stand for ages so he had to learn to stand again basically walk again so he was just like a baby all over again."
In August, little Bailey underwent a six-hour operation to have cochlear implants fitted.
Fiona Collins said the hope is that soon they will allow him to hear sound for the first time in a long time.
She continued: "It certainly has been difficult and devastating for the whole family, but now that he's had the surgery I think the future is looking brighter for everyone."
Meningitis Awareness Week is currently taking place and one charity is urging parents to act quickly if they suspect their child has the illness. Some of the early symptoms include fever, severe headache, stiff neck and a dislike of bright lights.
Kathryn McAuley of Meningitis Research Foundation said: "If you're worried at all about meningitis you need to act because it's a race against time and the quicker you get to medical attention the better the prognosis really."
Bailey's family agree getting him to hospital quickly saved his life.
They now hope with doctors' help their brave little boy can overcome his latest challenge.