Posted: Oct 24, 2012 4:24 PM by Rachel Cole - firstname.lastname@example.org
Updated: Oct 24, 2012 6:55 PM
ALICE -- A 14-month old baby was diagnosed with the west nile virus last week. It's the first confirmed case in that county. The baby's mother, Cassie Hunter, spoke out hoping to raise awareness for other parents in the community.
Hunter said she's lucky to be holding her son, Urijah Arriola in her arms, after seeing life threatening symptoms ravage his 14 month old body.
"It's not something to be taken lightly because in the end we find out west nile, we find out strep, pneumonia," Hunter said.
She initially thought he was just teething but his rising fever had her in a panic, rushing Urijah to the doctor.
"His fever was 105.6 and they rushed him to the back sink and doused him down with water and got his fever down to 102," Hunter said.
The staff at the Pediatric Clinic of Doctor Nirupama Pinakin Patel on 4th Street in Alice worked quickly to help Urijah, while Hunter was stuck watching helplessly.
"It was really scary to me because had it not been for Doctor Patel and her wonderful team of staff, you know, I could've lost my son," Hunter added.
Doctor Patel trusted her instincts when she saw Urijah's condition. She said she pin pointed his symptoms and immediately diagnosed him with west nile virus. The little guy was admitted to Christus Spohn Hospital where he spent four days recovering from the virus.
Hunter said, they live in the country and he could've been bitten by an infected mosquito while playing outside but Urijah wont be doing that for a while
"I think it's just best to keep your children inside better safe than sorry," Hunter said.
She is hoping to raise awareness among all parents to be mindful of side affects that come from what looks to be an average bug bite.
"Use repellant that contains deet because if you don't then you're not repelling the mosquitoes that carry west nile," Hunter said.
Now, baby Urijah is happy and healthy and just like any other little one he laughs and loves lollipops.
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