A healthy 12-year-old Louisiana girl's heart stopped for two minutes after she developed a rare life-threatening inflammatory syndrome believed to be linked to coronavirus.
Juliet Daly almost died when the coronavirus seemed to trigger a rare heart condition, that doctors across Britain, Italy, Spain and now the US are warning proves the virus could be deadly to some children.
Initial theories that coronavirus is less dangerous to children have been thrown into question after a growing number of children who have tested positive for COVID-19 have gone on to develop a rare inflammatory disease that is similar to 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.
Juliet, one of the first identified cases in the US of the inflammatory condition, and her mother Jennifer Daly, have told of their ordeal after the little girl went from being a 'perfectly' healthy, active 12-year-old to being hooked up to a ventilator in an ICU for four days.
Healthy 12-year-old Juliet Daly's heart stopped for two minutes after she developed a rare life-threatening inflammatory syndrome believed to be linked to coronavirus
'I died for two minutes,' Juliet told Good Morning America Wednesday.
Three weeks ago, Juliet was emergency airlifted to Ochsner Medical Center in New Orleans with heart failure.
She had no typical symptoms of coronavirus such as a fever, cough or breathing difficulties but had severe abdominal pains.
'My stomach would not stop hurting,' she said. 'I didn't want to move. I didn't want to live. I wanted for it all to stop.'
After being placed on a ventilator in the ICU, Juliet went into cardiac arrest. She also tested positive for COVID-19.
'After they put the breathing tube down her throat, her heart stopped,' Daly told GMA.
'They had to do two minutes of CPR on her. At that point, my whole world just crumbled.'
Daly warned other parents that the virus can be fatal to some children.
'I think it's really important to get the message out. I mean we nearly missed it,' she said.
'If we hadn't taken her to the hospital on time, I don't think things would've turned out okay.'
Juliet, one of the first identified cases in the US of the inflammatory condition, and her mother Jennifer Daly have told of their ordeal after the little girl went from being a 'perfectly' healthy, active 12-year-old to being hooked up to a ventilator in an ICU for four days
Juliet almost died when the coronavirus seemed to trigger a rare heart condition, that doctors across Britain, Italy, Spain and now the US are warning proves the virus could be deadly to some children
Initial theories that coronavirus is less dangerous to children have been thrown into question
Dr. Jake Kleinmahon, a pediatric cardiologist at Ochsner Medical Center who treated Juliet, said Juliet was diagnosed with a rare inflammatory condition that can lead to swollen arteries, similar to Kawasaki disease.
'COVID-19 can infect the heart and it can cause the cells in the heart to be unhappy and actually start to die,' he said.
Fears are mounting that coronavirus is more deadly to children than first thought after several doctors in hard-hit nations have started sounding the alarm about similar cases where children are developing deadly heart conditions thought to be triggered by the virus.
Doctors across the UK, Italy, Spain and the US have been grappling with cases of a mysterious heart condition in usually healthy children. Linking the cases is that the children also test positive for coronavirus.
The majority of the patients are thought to be under the age of five.
Juliet with her family. She is one of several children who have developed the inflammatory syndrome while also testing positive for coronavirus
Children are being admitted in what has been described as a 'multi-system inflammatory state'
This refers to the over-production of cytokines, known as a cytokine storm - the overreaction of the body's immune system
In a storm, the proteins start to attack healthy tissue, which can cause blood vessels to leak and lead to low blood pressure
Doctors say this also happens with Ebola, causing the body to go into shock
It has also been noted in older COVID-19 patients
WHAT SYMPTOMS DOES IT CAUSE?
The cases share overlapping features of toxic shock syndrome and atypical Kawasaki disease
Two of the most common symptoms of Kawasaki disease include a rash and a fever
TSS also causes a rash, dizziness and diarrhoea
The illness appears to be similar to Kawasaki disease - which causes blood vessels to become inflamed, and toxic shock syndrome - an overreaction by the immune system which causes the body to attack its own organs.
Three children with coronavirus - ranging from 6 months to 8 years old - who developed fever and inflammation of the heart and the gut are being treated for the syndrome at Columbia University Medical Center in New York.
'Right now, we're at the very beginning of trying to understand what that represents,' Columbia's Dr. Mark Gorelik told Reuters.
Gorelik, a pediatric rheumatologist and immunologist, said he was called in to consult on the cases to evaluate whether the children have Kawasaki disease.sonos sonos One (Gen 2) - Voice Controlled Smart Speaker with Amazon Alexa Built-in - Black read more
Of the three, one is critically ill, one is in intensive care and the third has been