Health

Toddler Burned By Kettle Loses Ability To Talk And Walk

| by Michael Doherty

A 17-month-old boy who pulled a boiling kettle on himself has reportedly lost the ability to walk and talk, according to his parents.

Kerrie Hall said that her 17-month-old son Hunter had started to walk just a few days before the incident. The toddler was left with burns to 12 percent of his body, requiring multiple surgeries as well as four skin grafts, according to Daily Mail.

The burns reportedly affected Hunter's head, chest, right leg, and feet -- a heartbreaking photo shows the young boy wrapped in bandages.

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The family was on a trip around Australia when the incident reportedly happened in March.

"He was all wet," recalled Hall, according to the Courier Mail. "I just ripped his shirt off and tried to get cold water on him."

The family rushed Hunter to the hospital, where he was put into cold water.

"Hunter was put straight into surgery to have all the burned skin rubbed off. It was only then that we discovered the extent of his burns," said Hall.

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Hall, along with Hunter's father Mick, spoke about how difficult it was to see their son lose his mobility as well as his developing language skills.

"Before the accident he spoke all the basic words," said Hall, "but now all he could do is grunt."

She added that the toddler had "learned to walk three or four steps three days before the accident."

"This will affect his whole life," the mother said. "He will have scarring for the rest of his life and because scars tighten he will also need physio to help him learn to walk again."

A number of the burns on Hunter's head and face have reportedly begun to clear up, and the family plans to undergo a trial treatment involving a pressure garment and a special gel in order to heal the burns on his body.

"His face is slightly red and still peeling but his head only has a few marks that we put Betadine and cream on and his chest just has the red marking, other than that it has healed," said Hunter's mother.

"He couldn't eat or drink so he had a gastro tube and an IV drip for the first four weeks," she said. "But he’s eating and drinking now and off all the pain killers."

The Queensland toddler's ongoing treatment will reportedly be expensive for the family, who has found some help in the form of a GoFundMe crowdfunding effort. The family has already gotten a special stroller needed to protect Hunter from the sun.

"We have already purchased the pram he requires, with an extra large sun shade and straightening support that he needs for his leg," says the GoFundMe page. "Accommodation is being provided by the Ronald McDonald House so his daddy and brothers can stay by his side in Brisbane for as long as necessary."

"The caravan mortgage and bills are still going to roll in," it adds. "Their trip around Australia has come to a sudden halt."

Sources: Daily Mail, Courier Mail, GoFundMe / Photo Credit: GoFundMe via Daily Mail, Alena Navarro-Whyte/Flickr 

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