As one Tennessee father learned Feb. 10, parents forgetting to wash their hands can endanger their baby’s life.
The daughter of Imgur user, AndNowForSomethingForCompletelyDifferent, wrote about his baby’s hospitalization after catching meningitis and then the respiratory syncytial virus.
RSV is a respiratory illness that almost all children contract before their second birthday, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports.
While anybody of any age can get the illness, children are more likely to contract severe forms of it.
And while most children do not end up hospitalized, parents should be careful.
“RSV is no joke. I didn’t know much about it until a week ago when it almost took my daughter from me. Please make sure to wash your hands before handling little ones, and make sure to wrap them up when heading outside into the cold,” the father wrote.
It all began when the baby was diagnosed with a light case of meningitis three weeks before, which she recovered from quickly.
Not long after, she caught a case of RSV that even the local hospital in Tennessee worried it would not be able to treat.
“Our local hospital told us if she got any worse there was nothing more they could do for her,” her father writes. “We had to move her to a better facility. They gave us the option of Vanderbilt [University Medical Center in Nashville] or Le Bonheur [Children's Hospital in Memphis]. We chose Le Bonheur since they saved my life more than once when I was a child.”
But just before the transport team could move her to Le Bonheur, the child flatlined, with her heart and brain failing to show any activity.
Le Bonheur transport team workers put the child on a ventilator and saved her life.
“She has beaten so many odds this past week and made me even more proud to call her my daughter. I can not even begin to thank the Le Bonheur staff for everything they have done for us. The PICU nurses have been literal life savers,” the father said.