Kiss of death – Adorable toddler ravaged by deadly infection after contracting herpes from a kiss
It was almost the kiss of death – this adorable toddler was ravaged by a deadly infection after contracting herpes from a kiss.
Toddler Juliano Rodgers was left fighting for his life after angry red blisters spread across his body.
The 14-month-old tot was diagnosed with herpes type one – a contagious and fatal form of the disease if not treated quickly.
His distraught mum, Sammi Rodgers, 28, believes he contracted the disease from kissing a family friend prone to cold sores.
Thankfully after a week in hospital, Juliano is set to make a full recovery.
Sammi, from Iowa, USA, is now encouraging other mums to be extra cautious of the disease.
Sammi, a care provider, said: “I was devastated when I found out that cold sores had caused my baby to become so ill.
“At first doctors assumed he had the flu, or a bad case of hand, foot and mouth disease, but the sores continued to spread and it got so much worse.
“Blisters were growing outside of his mouth and were covering his hands, neck and stomach.
“He’s been in so much pain and as a mother it’s really hard to watch, the sores were bleeding really badly.
“I don’t want to accuse anyone in particular, but there is a family friend who is prone to cold sores but she usually stays away from anyone when she has them.
“But I’m assuming that’s the only way he would have contracted it, we saw her a few days before he became ill.
“Doctors told me that it could have killed him if he wasn’t treated in time, it’s terrifying.
“I want other parents to know just how dangerous it can be.”
Sammi became concerned on July 23 when Juliano’s fever soared and he was sick several times.
She took her baby to four different hospitals before he was finally diagnosed with herpes.
Sammi added: “It was when we were turned away from the first hospital that I noticed the blisters, he was getting more and more uncomfortable.
“He wouldn’t stop crying and couldn’t sleep.
“At the third hospital visit they said it was chicken pox but we were transferred to another hospital nearby that had the facilities to treat it.
“By this point the blisters had spread all over his body.
“They took a swab from his mouth and only then did they confirm it was herpes, spread by someone with a cold sore.
“Since then he has been kept in hospital and placed on morphine to keep him comfortable.
“It’s sad because this is a lifelong problem now and every time he gets sick he could have an outbreak.
“It breaks my heart that I can’t do anything to help him.”
Juliano has now received antibiotics and is on the road to recovery.
Sammi said: “His sores on his body are now healing, but his mouth is taking a little longer, it keeps bleeding and he is still in so much pain.
“Doctors have now said that as long as we can keep him off needing extra fluids he can go home and we will continue his treatment there.
“I just want to encourage others to wash their hands before playing with children, or going too close to their face.
“And if you have a cold sore the please stay away completely.
“Babies immune systems are just not used to the viruses and so it can be so much worse.
“It’s been really hard for all of us, I have four other children, Nevaeh, eight, Junior, seven, Destiny, six, and Lyric, four, and I miss them all so much.
“They haven’t been able to visit because of it being so contagious.”
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