A SCHOOLGIRL, 11, was left fighting for her life after contracting a rare Covid condition that turned her yellow.
Madison Carey collapsed on holiday a month after testing positive for Covid, with doctors warning it was “touch and go” for the dangerously ill Tamworth girl.
Her parents have spoken out about a rare but serious inflammatory condition that can happen weeks after someone has had coronavirus.
Elizabeth and Simon told Birmingham Live that Madison never fully recovered after contracting Covid in June, and suffered from recurring tiredness and high temperatures.
While the family was visiting Madame Tussauds in London in July, Madison said she was “feeling a bit iffy” and her health suddenly deteriorated at the tourist attraction.
Her mum said: “She was walking around like she was drunk; she had gone… yellow [in] colour and was very lethargic.”
They tried to get through the attraction “as quickly as possible” before the stricken girl “sort of collapsed on the stairs”.
Confused by her symptoms, she and Simon initially assumed that Madison was “hungry or thirsty, but she couldn’t eat or drink”.
After she appeared to rally, they took her Hammersmith tube station, where she “collapsed” yet again.
Tube staff helpfully fetched her a chair and a glass of water, before Simon called 999.
Unfortunately they were fobbed off, with the service allegedly saying that it wasn’t an emergency.
So the worried couple walked with her to the nearest hospital at Charing Cross.
And Madison was lucky, as clued-up medics there immediately recognised that she was suffering from either sepsis or Paediatric Inflammatory Multisystem Syndrome (PIMS).
RARE INFLAMMATORY CONDITION
PIMS is caused by the immune system, which fights of the virus, but then over-reacts to affect other parts of the body.
When this happens, it is important that children receive urgent medical attention.
If untreated, the inflammation can cause tissue damage, poor function of vital organs or potentially even death.
She was transported to The Royal Brompton to be treated by heart and lung specialists there.
Elizabeth described the terrifying moment that Madison was fighting for her life, when “her blood pressure dropped completely, she had got no pulse and a little heart rate.
“She was seconds from going into cardiac arrest”.
Doctors “pumped some adrenaline and some sort of drug” into her, before putting her into a coma.
She was walking around like she was drunk; she had gone… yellow [in] colour and was very lethargic.
Elizabeth praised the Charing Cross Hospital for making the right call in sending her daughter to The Royal Brompton, as “she wouldn’t be with us now”.
Simon has urged fellow parents to be aware of PIMS symptoms, “because this is so rare and Covid is still rife in Tamworth”.
He hopes to “save another child’s life”, especially as “there are many people who don’t take Covid seriously”.
Simon says that parents must get their kids to hospital “as soon as possible” if they notice similar symptoms.
Great Ormond Street Hospital (GOSH) says the main symptom of PIMS is a high temperature that lasts for a few days.
The rare condition mostly affects “young people in adolescence, but children can get PIMS too,” it adds.
Other symptoms include: a rash; tiredness and weakness; swollen neck glands; red eyes; muscle aches and pains; red and cracked lips; peeling skin on hands and feet; headache; diarrhoea and vomiting; tummy pain or cramps.
Madison was later transferred to Heartlands Hospital in Birmingham, before being sent home.
A relieved Elizabeth said that while her girl is “back home and a lot better now”, she will have to continue having her heart and valves monitored by the hospital for the next five years.
The Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health says PIMS is a “very rare syndrome” which “occurs in less than 0.5 per cent of children who have or who have had) Covid-19.
“Most children with the condition will not be seriously affected but, in a very small number of cases, it can be serious.”