Saturday, 5 September 2009

Suffering of Healthy Swine Flu victim who took advised precautions

She suffered because these advises are all wrong. For airborne virus
it is useless to just use hygiene to stop the virus.

What is not advised was the wearing of masks and quarantine, the only
defense against airborne virus like this Swine Flu.

Just by being healthy and fit does not guarantee your safety.

It took a lung machine to prevent her from being dead.

'It's been a nightmare,' father says of daughter's swine flu
Girl, 10, fought the virus

By Elaine Marsilio (Contact)
Originally published 05:43 p.m., September 4, 2009
Updated 11:09 p.m., September 4, 2009
Girl recovers from swine flu
Kayla Piñon, 10, is all smiles as her mother, Melinda Piñon, talks
about her daughter overcoming the H1N1 virus. The Dawson Elementary
student spent weeks in the hospital battling the H1N1 virus and a drug-
resistant staph infection.

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CORPUS CHRISTI — Kayla Piñon's parents said they took precautions
against the swine flu, or H1N1 virus.

Kayla's mother, Melinda, disinfected the house regularly and told her
daughter to wash her hands and avoid sick people.

Kayla, 10, carried hand sanitizer in her purse and often opened doors
with a napkin.

"It still managed to get her," her mother said.

Kayla returned home Wednesday after about a month at Driscoll
Children's Hospital. Kayla doesn't remember much about that month. She
was too ill.

Her parents only recently explained to her that she had swine flu.

On Wednesday, Kayla saw her 1-year-old miniature schnauzer, Kody, and
ate fajita tacos, her first home-cooked meal in weeks.

Her family doesn't know how the Dawson Elementary fifth-grader picked
up the virus.

Kayla has been a healthy girl, a runner on the school's cross country
team and a former participant in the Beach to Bay Relay Marathon.

Kayla's parents and her doctors consider her recovery to be a miracle,
and some of the credit goes to a machine that takes blood from the
body, oxygenates it as your lungs normally would do, and then returns
it to the body.

Within six to eight hours of Kayla being on a ventilator at the
hospital, Dr. Karl Serrao told her parents she would die unless they
used the extracorporeal membrane oxygenation machine, Serrao said.

The machine allowed Kayla's lungs to start healing, he said.

"The only thing between Kayla and death was that machine," Serrao

Kayla also had a team of more than 20 medical professionals tending to
her, Serrao said.

She was admitted at Driscoll Children's Hospital on July 31 after
having flu-like symptoms, shortness of breath, fatigue and headaches.

Her physician had diagnosed her with the flu earlier that week, but it
wasn't clear what type it was, her parents said. Kayla was taking
Tamiflu, but she turned weak and tired. The doctor advised her parents
to take her to the emergency room.

X-rays showed she had pneumonia, and mucus blocking a lower portion of
her lungs, her father, Luis, said. "Things had gotten worse," he said.

Within 48 hours the family found out she had H1N1 — and a drug-
resistant staph infection in her lungs.

That combination can be deadly, Serrao said.

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services released a summary
Thursday finding that most typically healthy children, older than 5
years old who got H1N1, also had bacterial infections.

Serrao said the combination of H1N1 and infection could affect anyone,
even if they're normally healthy. Those who are pregnant, young or
elderly have been found to be the most at risk, he said.

For Kayla, the H1N1 caused her pneumonia and affected her immunity, he
said. Her lungs were at risk of contracting the bacterial infection,
he said.

All five members of Kayla's family plan to get vaccinated for both
seasonal flu and the H1N1 vaccine, when it becomes available in the

"It's been a nightmare," Kayla's father said. "It's something you want
to wake up (from) and wish it's not true."

Kayla will do at-home respiratory treatment four times a day to break
up mucus in her lungs. She will continue the treatments for the staph
infection for as long as a year, her father said.

Kayla, who plans to bake brownies for her team of doctors, will be
home-schooled for at least a month to monitor her progress.

"She still has a long road ahead of her," her mother said.

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(4) User Comments:
Reply to this Post | Suggest removal
related links Posted by 710237 on September 4, 2009 at 6:12 p.m.

I am so glad this had a wonderful ending. It must have been a horrible
ordeal for everyone. Thanks to all the wonderful doctors!

It amazes me at how horrible this H1N1 is and how fast it can travel.
It equally amazed me to see that this family took all the precautions
necessary and yet their daughter contracted this illness. It's all
pretty scary to me.
Reply to this Post | Suggest removal
related links Posted by 232412 on September 4, 2009 at 6:32 p.m.

ECMO saved my son's life at birth. ECMO really is a last resort and
it's so difficult to imagine that the swine flu caused her to be on
ECMO...that is serious stuff! This just proves that the swine flu is
not the 'typical' flu and it's nothing to mess around with.

I'm just so glad she had Dr. Serrao and the rest of the staff at
Driscoll. They are an awesome bunch!
Reply to this Post | Suggest removal
related links Posted by 233517 on September 4, 2009 at 8:05 p.m.

Good news for this young lady and her family.
Reply to this Post | Suggest removal
related links Posted by 713600 on September 5, 2009 at 2:28 a.m.

God blessed this family! I cannot imagine having a child as sick as
this. Rest and recovery to all of you! Mom and Dad also, you deserve

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