The four-year-old boy named Leo probably had his life saved by his mother’s network on her Facebook profile. After taking her son to the pediatrician for a high fever and something that looked like a rash, Deborah Copaken Kogan decided to post some pictures of what her son’s appearance was like during the illness. Even though it was not the reaction she expected from her Facebook “friends”, the correct diagnosis for Kawasaki’s Disease was firstly pointed out by one of her contacts.
At first, the pediatrician wrote a prescription for Amoxicillin, used for the treatment of strep, which is quite common in small kids during this time of the year. At the same time, the strep test came back negative, but that was not enough reason to raise suspicion on his condition. After all, according to Deborah, none of her other kids’ strep tests ever gave a positive result, even when that was the correct result.
After going through the episode together with her son, Deborah wrote an article to the Slate website. The first advice that it could more serious than she expected came from someone she barely knows. “Ten minutes later [from posting the pictures on Facebook], I received a call on my cell phone from Stephanie, a film actress and former neighbor. “I hope you’ll excuse me for butting in,” she said, “But you have to get to the hospital. Now.”
Something that might confuse parents and doctors when it comes to Kawasaki’s is that the first symptoms are alike regular children’s problems. A big differential which brings out that it might be Kawasaki’s is the fact that the person’s figure gets increasingly swollen. As a matter of fact, Deborah noticed that it got to a point when her son’s face was barely recognizable.
The problem in taking too long to figure out that it is Kawasaki’s is about the damage that can be done in a short period of time. About five days after the first symptoms begin is enough to cause permanent damage to the patient. Once discovered, the treatment can be done and avoid any situation which could be more complicated than necessary.
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