The mom of a Missouri boy who recently contracted COVID-19 is alerting other parents after the novel virus caused the boy to have a stroke.
Sara Parris and her 3-year-old son, Colt, seemed fine until he began to show a series of odd symptoms last week. Parris was shocked when he tested positive for the coronavirus but even more when doctors informed told her that he had suffered a stroke as a result of the disease.
Colt’s symptoms began early last week.
His mother revealed how her little one had grown tired and lethargic and suddenly decided to not eat or drink. She quickly took him to a medical clinic in Salisbury, Missouri, where she waited on his COVID-19 diagnosis.
And while the results came back negative, health care workers were not confident in the diagnosis.
She was then told to bring her son back to the hospital where he could receive more specialized care.
Sarah and her husband, Tim, hopped in the car with their son — driving over an hour to reach the University of Missouri’s Women’s and Children’s Hospital in Columbia.
That being said, the antibody test showed a different result.
“They did get a test back by the time we were admitted and that’s when we got the positive antibody to know that it was COVID,” Sara told KSN-TV.
In the same time, Sara began to observe other odd symptoms in her son.
“I noticed Wednesday his speech was a little off, but I honestly thought he’s in so much pain and he’s so tired,” Sara recalled. “So, I went to hand him his Boo and I noticed that he didn’t use his dominant arm to grab it. He reached over to grab his bunny and then again, I knew something else wasn’t right.”
“He was talking, but it was more mumbled. Really couldn’t understand him,” she told Fox. When he couldn’t even reach out to grab the stuffed animal, it was clear this was serious.
The doctors performed more tests to discover what was actually going on. But the news that came next they did not expect…
“The result came back and I looked at it and it was a clear stroke. So, there was a lack of blood supply to the left side of the brain,” MU Health Care pediatric neurologist Dr. Paul Carney told KSN.
“The COVID diagnosis is important because we think the reason why this patient with COVID, including the child, have strokes and a variety of other problems is that they have [the] propensity to form clots,” added Dr. Camilo Gomez, who also treated Colt.
“I still don’t know if I believe it,” Sara told Fox. “And so I get the news and of course, I broke down.”
Colt’s doctors were also stunned by his diagnosis, Carney has said in his 20 years practicing pediatric neurology, he has never seen anything quite like it.
While the link between COVID-19 and strokes has been known to physicians for much of the pandemic but most of the patients have between in their 20s, 30s, and 40s.
After more time doing research, Carney was able to discover only one other reported case of a child with COVID-19 but the child did not survive.
“If this had been anybody over the age of 40 or 60, they would have probably had a very different outcome,” the doctor shared.
Last week, Colt underwent an emergency thrombectomy surgery to remove the clot and has made significant progress ever since. His mother said she saw an immediate improvement in her son’s behavior, which was all she could ask for this holiday season.
“I don’t think we could have asked for anything more than that,” Sara shared. “He came out of the sedation period and his speech was there, his words were there. It wasn’t clear, but it was more than [last] Wednesday morning.”
The doctors are also impressed by Colt’s speedy recovery. That being said, they still urge parents everywhere how COVID-19 can affect children.
With a background in the creative and educational fields, Amelia Finefrock is freelance writer, singer-songwriter and nanny based in Chicago.
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