A Mississippi mother took to Facebook to share a photo of her 5-year-old daughter walking out of the hospital following a harrowing ordeal involving a tick bite. Jessica Griffin said her daughter, Kailyn, woke up on June 6 and couldn’t walk.
“I was just thinking that her legs were asleep until I noticed that she couldn’t hardly talk!” Griffin posted on her Facebook page. “After tons of blood work and a CT of the head, UMMC has ruled it as tick paralysis!”
Griffin had a warning for other parents, and included photos of where the tick bit Kailyn on her head, as well as a photo of the pest itself.
“PLEASE for the love of god check your kids for ticks!” she posted, in part. “It’s more common in children than it is adults! We are being admitted to the hospital for observation and we’re hoping her balance gets straightened out!”
The post, which received over 107,000 reactions and 414,000 shares, was followed by a photo of Kailyn walking out of the hospital with “Get Well” balloons.
“Look who is WALKING out of the hospital!!” Griffin posted. “Everything is completely back to normal! GOD IS GOOD!! Thanks to everyone for the prayers!”
Tick paralysis is most commonly caused by the American dog tick and the Rocky Mountain wood tick, according to Columbia University’s Lyme and Tick-Borne Diseases Research Center. The condition can become life-threatening if the tick is not removed quickly, with the potential for paralysis to affect respiratory muscles.
Griffin’s warning comes just days after Danielle McNair took to Facebook to caution others about her son’s ordeal. Mason McNair, also 5, discovered a tick in his belly button and broke out in a rash all over his body. After several trips to the doctor, the boy was diagnosed with Rocky Mountain spotted fever, which is a bacterial infection that can lead to possible limb amputation, hearing loss, paralysis and mental disabilities.
He was given antibiotics and is now “completely healthy,” according to his mother.