A five-year-old girl paralyzed by the enterovirus has been on a ventilator in the intensive care unit at Children’s of Alabama for three weeks, as reported by Mail Online.
Kinley Galbreath, from Hamilton, was diagnosed with the potentially fatal respiratory illness enterovirus D-68. She is paralyzed from her arms to her legs.
Kinley’s mother, Kim Nichols, said that her daughter had a mild form of asthma prior to being diagnosed with the virus; children with respiratory issues are more likely to suffer complications with enterovirus.
Nichols said that Kinley told her “‘my hands are going numb’ and by that point she started to lose movement in her neck.”
On the third day, Nichols added, “is when she lost movement from her legs down.”
“The only thing she’s had control of has been her toes. And that’s what she wiggles to let me know something’s wrong. And she’ll blink her eyes for yes, and won’t blink her eyes for no,” Nichols said.
Kinley, who turns six in two weeks, was so weakened by the paralysis that she needed a tracheotomy to breathe. Her mom added that Kinley lost all of the muscles in her diaphragm “to push any sound up to talk.”
“Today, she’s really frustrated, because she started moving her lips and I can’t understand what she’s saying. She’s continuously crying because I can’t understand,” Nichols said.
Dr. Jayne Ness, a pediatric neurologist at Children’s of Alabama, said that although Kinley tested positive for the virus, they cannot be sure that it is connected to the paralysis.
Ness also said that although she is hopeful Kinely will recover, it will be “a long, slow rehabilitation.”
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), 628 people from 44 states and the District of Columbia have been affected by enterovirus. The majority of the cases are believed to be children.
The CDC said that four people with enterovirus have died nationwide, although it is not yet clear what role it played in their deaths.
Officials have said that the enterovirus has flu and cold-like symptoms and can cause difficulty breathing for infants and young children.
According to the Florida Department of Health, the disease can spread through droplets in coughs or sneezes, or when someone touches a contaminated surface. Officials said that the best way to prevent the disease from spreading is by keeping good hygiene.
Photo Source: Mail Online