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Boy, 13, is fighting for his life on a ventilator after testing positive for coronavirus and developing tell-tale red eyes and rash of serious COVID-19 linked 'inflammatory syndrome' NHS issued urgent alert over

Boy, 13, is fighting for his life on a ventilator after testing positive for coronavirus and developing tell-tale red eyes and rash of serious COVID-19 linked 'inflammatory syndrome' NHS issued urgent alert over
  • Lewis Greig, 13, from Aberdeen, has been in ICU at Glasgow's Royal Hospital for Children since last week
  • Medics thought he couldn't have COVID-19 because he did not have dry cough but he later tested positive
  • Lewis has been put on a ventilator after suffering bloodshot eyes, measles-like rashes and vomiting
  • NHS has told doctors to be vigilant of inflammatory symptoms in children as new syndrome has emerged
  • Around 20 children have so far been diagnosed with the toxic shock syndrome, likened to Kawasaki disease
A 13-year-old boy has been left fighting for his life with coronavirus after developing inflammatory symptoms including bloodshot eyes and rashes.
Lewis Greig, from Torry, Aberdeen, has been on a ventilator at the Royal Hospital for Children, Glasgow, after he fell ill last week with a high temperature.
Mother Karen Simpson said the family had been assured he did not have COVID-19 as he did not have a dry cough. But Lewis's condition worsened with other symptoms, including a measles-like rash, red swollen eyes and vomiting. 
It comes after the NHS warned there was 'growing concern' a coronavirus-related inflammatory syndrome was emerging, which experts fear may be a complication of the deadly coronavirus. 
Medics were earlier this week issued an urgent alert about a sharp rise in the number of infants being admitted to intensive care with a Kawasaki-like disease and told to be mindful of symptoms like Lewis's. 
Health chiefs yesterday insisted they are 'unaware' of any deaths in British children from a serious 'inflammatory syndrome' thought to be linked to the coronavirus - despite Matt Hancock admitting that 'some' youngsters have mysteriously died with no underlying conditions. 
Officials have refused to say how many British children have been affected by the illness but up to 20 have fallen critically unwell, according to reports. One child needed to be put on a form of life support after their heart and lungs began to fail. The majority of the patients are thought to be under the age of five. 
Lewis Greig, from Torry, Aberdeen, has been on a ventilator at the Royal Hospital for Children, Glasgow, after he suddenly became unwell last week with a high temperature.But Lewis's condition became gradually worse, and he began to show other symptoms, including a rash, red swollen eyes and vomiting. He went on to developed a measles-like rash on his hands.
Lewis Greig, from Torry, Aberdeen, has been on a ventilator at the Royal Hospital for Children, Glasgow, after he suddenly became unwell last week with a high temperature (pictured: Lewis, left, and the rash which appeared on his hand, right)

WHAT IS KAWASAKI DISEASE? 

KAWASAKI DISEASE
Kawasaki disease is a condition that causes inflammation in the walls of the blood vessels and affects mostly children under five years old.
The inflammation can weaken the coronary arteries, which supply the heart with blood. This can lead to aneurysms and heart attacks.
The condition affects eight children out of every 100,000 and statistics show it is fatal in three per cent of cases that go untreated. 
WHAT SYMPTOMS DOES IT CAUSE?
The symptoms of Kawasaki disease usually develop in three phases over a six-week period, according to advice on the NHS' website.
The first signs are a fever and a rash in the first few weeks, followed by the eyes of children becoming red and swollen. 
It can also cause the lips to dry up and crack, a sore throat, swollen lymph glands and the tongue to become red, the NHS warns. 
The second phase of Kawasaki disease often causes symptoms such as abdominal pain, vomiting, diarrhoea, headaches, joint pain and jaundice. 
In the third phase, symptoms tend to disappear but children 'may still have a lack of energy and become easily tired during this time'.  
Lewis was admitted to hospital in Aberdeen before being transferred to an intensive care unit in Glasgow, where he tested positive for the virus.
Lewis is in a critical but stable condition and is showing signs of improvement, although his family must wear protective equipment while visiting.
Ms Simpson spoke about Lewis's ordeal to warn parents that children with COVID-19 can show different symptoms to adults.
Ms Simpson, who is currently staying in a Glasgow hotel to be close to her son, with Lewis's father Wayne, 47, said: 'It all started last Saturday when we discovered he had a temperature. It was really high - about 40.5 degrees.
'At first we didn't think it was anything too major. We assumed he had a bug and that it would pass.
'On the Sunday though, things weren't any better and Lewis started to get progressively worse as the week went on.
'He started being sick, had a sore head and was really tired. We'd already been on the phone to the COVID-19 hub on 111 and they said to make sure he was drinking - if they needed to admit him they would.
'By Thursday, he had developed a measles-like rash on his hands and his eyes went deep red and bloodshot.
'On Friday morning, he woke up in a bad way. We phoned the doctor, who had a quick look at him and they phoned the sick kids' hospital.
'We took him up straight away, and when we got there, he couldn't walk from the car into the building.'
Within hours of being taken to hospital, Lochside Academy pupil Lewis had been put on a ventilator to help him breathe.
And in the early hours of Saturday, he was transferred to Glasgow by ambulance.
Ms Simpson said: 'I have never seen anything like it before. It was so scary. The first few tests they did came back negative for COVID-19. But then they did another one and that came back positive on Sunday night.'
Ms Simpson now wants to make other parents aware of tell-tale signs which may show children are suffering from the virus.
She said: 'I want to help other parents understand how to spot it. They might show some really strange symptoms which aren't fitting with the normal coronavirus symptoms. Make sure you get them checked and keep pushing to have them tested.
The condition is a form of toxic shock syndrome which causes the body’s immune system to attack its own organs
'One of the doctors said to us children don't present with a dry cough like adults do. In children, there's an inflammatory reaction which makes it look like an autoimmune disease.'
Lewis, who is a brother to Nathan, Sam, Abby, Jorja and Eli, is now showing small signs of progress - and his family are determined to help him pull through.
Ms Simpson said: 'Lewis is now making small steady steps towards getting better, although he is still having to have quite a lot of medication and is still on a ventilator.
'He's able to move now and knows when we go into his room, although we can't have very much contact with him and need to wear PPE.
'But he is showing some positive signs and he is definitely in the right place. He will get through this because he is a fighter.'
NHS doctors have been warned to look out for severe reactions in children - including symptoms like Lewis's.
An urgent alert issued by NHS England said there was a 'growing concern' a COVID-19-related inflammatory syndrome was emerging, a rare form of toxic shock which is said to be similar to Kawasaki disease.
Doctors were yesterday issued an alert about a sharp rise in the number of infants being admitted to intensive care across the UK with the 'inflammatory syndrome' over the past three weeks. Most of the children affected already have Kawasaki disease, NHS sources said.
Health chiefs today insisted they are 'unaware' of any deaths in British children from the inflammatory syndrome - despite Matt Hancock admitting that 'some' youngsters have mysteriously died with no underlying conditions. 
Officials have refused to say how many British children have been affected by the illness but up to 20 have been hospitalised, it emerged today. 
One child needed to be put on a form of life support after their heart and lungs began to fail. The majority of the patients are thought to be under the age of five.

HEALTH CHIEFS INSIST THEY ARE 'UNAWARE' OF ANY DEATHS IN BRITISH CHILDREN FROM KAWASAKI-LIKE COMPLICATION 

Health chiefs yesterday insisted they are 'unaware' of any deaths in British children from a serious 'inflammatory syndrome' thought to be linked to the coronavirus - despite Matt Hancock admitting that 'some' youngsters have mysteriously died with no underlying conditions.
Doctors were earlier this week issued an alert about a sharp rise in the number of infants being admitted to intensive care across the UK with the Kawasaki-like disease. 
Officials have refused to say how many British children have been affected by the illness but up to 20 have fallen critically unwell, according to reports. One child needed to be put on a form of life support after their heart and lungs began to fail. The majority of the patients are thought to be under the age of five.  
The Health Secretary was yesterday quizzed on LBC about the inflammatory syndrome and admitted he was 'very worried' by the mysterious complication. He was also asked about how many children had died from coronavirus. 
He originally said all the deceased youngsters had 'significant underlying health conditions' but then backtracked immediately after host Nick Ferrari questioned him about the new inflammatory illness that had prompted the national alert. Mr Hancock then admitted 'some' children with no health woes had succumbed to COVID-19. 
The Department of Health insisted that Mr Hancock was not referring to children who have died from the inflammatory syndrome potentially linked to the disease - and was discussing COVID-19 deaths in general. 
But some of the children needing intensive care have tested negative for COVID-19, further complicating the diagnosis and raising questions that another pathogen could be behind the condition.    
Kawasaki disease is a condition that causes inflammation in the walls of the blood vessels and affects mostly children under five years old. 
There are roughly eight cases for every 100,000 children in the UK and statistics show it is fatal in three per cent of cases that go untreated.
The new COVID-19-linked cases are occurring when someone with Kawasaki disease contracts the virus and it produces complications, the source told the newspaper. 
Children are not thought to be badly affected by COVID-19 - very few youngsters have died around the world since the pandemic began in December. 
Their apparent resilience to the disease has baffled doctors for weeks because they are often 'super-spreaders' of viral illnesses such as flu.
But children being seen with this syndrome often suffer from stomach pain, heart inflammation and 'gastrointestinal symptoms' - which could include vomiting and diarrhoea.
NHS medical director Professor Stephen yesterday urged parents who are worried about a child who is sick and not recovering to seek medical help.

TWO-YEAR-OLD BOY RUSHED TO HOSPITAL WITH INFLAMMATORY SYNDROME LINKED TO COVID-19

EXCLUSIVE By Jake Wallis Simons, Associate Global Editor
A mother has told how her two-year-old son was rushed to hospital with a dangerous inflammatory syndrome thought to be linked to COVID-19.
Gemma Brown, 38, told MailOnline that her son, Bertie, was admitted to Worcestershire Royal hospital last month on his second birthday, when his temperature soared over 40C (104F) and his blotchy rash began to turn black.
Doctors were initially baffled but a senior consultant eventually diagnosed the boy with the rare Kawasaki disease, a form of toxic shock syndrome which causes the body’s immune system to attack its own organs.
But Bertie was not given a COVID-19 test, leaving both medics and his family in the dark about a possible link between Kawasaki disease and coronavirus.Bertie Brown was admitted to Worcestershire Royal hospital last month on his second birthday after developing a fever and rash across his body
His temperature soared over 40C (104F) and the blotchy rash spread across his body and began to turn black. Doctors were initially baffled but a senior consultant eventually diagnosed the boy with the rare Kawasaki disease
His temperature soared over 40C (104F) and the blotchy rash spread across his body and began to turn black. Doctors were initially baffled but a senior consultant eventually diagnosed the boy with the rare Kawasaki disease
‘I don’t know how the Government is going to prove there’s a link if they’re not testing patients,’ the mother-of-two from Droitwich Spa, Worcestershire, said.
‘I asked for him to be tested, as I had a gut feeling that there was a connection between covid and Kawasaki.
‘Both attack your immune system and the whole family had been poorly with Covid symptoms before Bertie fell ill.
‘I was adamant that there was a link and was begging for a test, but they just told me that there was no need to test the under-fives.’
The boy was given an immunoglobin transfusion and was in hospital for five days. ‘It was horrific seeing him like that,’ Mrs Brown said.
‘He didn’t have any respiratory problems but he was put in a ward on his own and he was easily the most poorly child in the hospital.
His mother Gemma (pictured with Bertie and is older brother George, 14) believes his symptoms were a complication of the coronavirusBut Bertie was not given a COVID-19 test, leaving both medics and his family in the dark about a possible linkHis mother Gemma (pictured with Bertie and is older brother George, 14) believes his symptoms were a complication of the coronavirus. But Bertie (right) was not given a COVID-19 test, leaving both medics and his family in the dark about a possible link
‘His rash had started out being itchy, but it quickly put him in agony. His temperature was dangerously high and they were monitoring him round the clock.’
Bertie, who was born very prematurely weighing only 1.5lb, has always had a weak immune system, making him susceptible to viruses.
‘Thank God he is OK now and has come home, though he’s still on Aspirin to prevent his blood clotting,’ his mother said.
‘He’s much better in himself. But the fact is that we just don’t know what’s been going on as he wasn’t tested for coronavirus.’




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