Beaumont, California (KCAL/KCBS) — The parents of an 8-year-old boy who developed a rare illness called Multisystem Inflammatory Syndrome in Children, or MIS-C, after contracting COVID-19 shared their story Thursday.
After fighting for his life in the intensive care unit at Loma Linda University Children’s Hospital, 8-year-old Anthony Rodriguez Jr. recently returned home to cheers and hugs. (CBSLA)
After fighting for his life in the intensive care unit at Loma Linda University Children’s Hospital, Anthony Rodriguez Jr. recently returned home to cheers and hugs.
The child’s father, Anthony Rodriguez, said the entire family contracted COVID-19 in early December with mild symptoms and that they all seemingly recovered from their bout with the virus.
But five weeks later, the younger Anthony suddenly came down with a fever.
“He started having like blood shot eyes, cracked lips, a little bit of vomiting,” Rodriguez said.
After about a week, when they thought their son was getting better, Rodriguez said his wife happened to come across the symptoms for MIS-C.
“We both just got this bad feeling, even though he was feeling better, we still had this bad feeling,” Rodriguez said. “And we rushed him to the hospital.”
Rodriguez said doctors told him Anthony was suffering from septic shock and was having heart failure.
“That’s the hardest thing to say: that if we did not take him that day, we don’t know if he would have woken up the next day,” Rodriguez said of the experience.
According to his parents, Anthony has no underlying conditions and was subjected to a variety of treatments before doctors found one that worked.
North Hollywood pediatrician Dr. Joel Warsh, who was not involved in treating Anthony, said he has had parents call him asking about the symptoms to look for, which can vary from child to child.
“We are seeing fever that last for several days, vomiting, diarrhea, stomachaches, skin rashes, feeling tired, fast heartbeat, red eyes, swelling,” he said.
Warsh said it was still unclear why some kids get the illness and others don’t.
As for Rodriguez, he hopes that sharing his story will help save another child suffering from MIS-C.
“You don’t have to go through what we went through,” he said.
Loma Linda University Children’s Hospital said it has seen about 40 cases of MIS-C.
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