The fact that real life experience is the best job training is not lost on the Lewis family in eastern Oregon. When Evelyn, the young daughter of Amanda and Lantz Lewis, became seriously ill in a short amount of time they had no idea what was going on.
Evelyn became very lethargic and had a quickly developing paralysis. The situation was becoming horrifying and urgent: How scary it must have been to see their child suddenly lose her ability to stand.
The parents, not knowing where to turn, videoed her with her symptoms in full swing. It was sent to close family and friends in hope that someone would have an inkling as to what was going on.
With the girl’s condition worsening, her parents took her to the emergency room very soon after posting the video. Luckily, they were seen quickly and were treated by a doctor who had seen this before.
Here’s where the experience factor is worth its weight in gold. The attending physician immediately knew that the culprit might be a tick.
“The doctor said over the last 15 years he saw this in seven or eight children her age (under 10),” Amanda relayed. Staff combed her hair thoroughly and sure enough, a tick was found.
The condition is known as tick paralysis and progresses very quickly. Loss of feeling and movement begins in the legs and spreads to the trunk, arms, and head. If the tick is not discovered and stopped the condition can lead to respiratory distress and even death.
The tick found on Evelyn was not the type that transmits Lyme Disease, but that didn’t make it any less dangerous. There are 43 different tick species worldwide and their degrees of danger vary greatly.
The Lewis family is happy to report that their little girl improved rapidly once the tick was removed. She continued to complain about an itchy head due to the bite, but that is something they’ll handle.
Evelyn continued to improve and by the next day seemed to be back to her old self. The parents were quick to give the doctor credit for his quick diagnosis and action.
The video has garnered over 15 million views and has been a tremendous tool in regard to heightening “tick awareness” this spring season. The outbreak of tick infestations has been on a steady upswing and Amanda is glad she has helped make parents more aware of this harrowing potential threat.
They certainly don’t want others to go through what they went through on that scary evening. We hope that everyone will keep their eyes open and use proper precautions when combating the dreaded tick!