September 25, 2023

14-year-old boy loses hands and legs following severe flu-like symptoms

Title: Tennessee Teen Faces Devastating Outcome: Flu-Like Symptoms Lead to Amputations

In a shocking turn of events, 14-year-old Mathias Uribe from Tennessee recently had to undergo life-altering amputations after what initially seemed like flu-like symptoms turned into a deadly health crisis. Mathias, who was rushed to Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital on June 30, was diagnosed with pneumonia and streptococcal toxic shock syndrome.

The severity of Mathias’ condition soon became apparent when he went into cardiac arrest. To keep his blood pumping, doctors had to put him on an extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO) machine for two weeks. However, the treatment inadvertently led to poor blood flow to his extremities, resulting in the inevitable decision to amputate both his hands at the wrist and his legs below the knee.

As Mathias fights to recover at the hospital, his family is hopeful that he will soon be able to leave with new prosthetic limbs, allowing him to regain his independence and pursue his hobbies once again. Dr. Katie Boyle, Mathias’ ICU pediatrician, highlighted the rarity of his rapidly deteriorating condition, emphasizing that most children do not become as critically ill from the flu.

The incident serves as a wake-up call for parents everywhere, reminding them of the importance of flu vaccinations for their children. Additionally, monitoring children for symptoms such as high fever, difficulty swallowing fluids, or unusual drowsiness is crucial in order to identify severe complications like those experienced by Mathias.

Mathias, who has already undergone more than a dozen surgeries, will need to remain in the hospital for another month before traveling to Atlanta for prosthetic fittings and rehabilitation. The Uribe family has launched a GoFundMe campaign to help alleviate the burden of his substantial medical costs. Since its initiation, the campaign has garnered an overwhelming response, with over $235,000 raised thus far.

Mathias’ harrowing journey serves as a stark reminder of the unpredictable and devastating consequences that a routine illness can have on a young life. The Uribe family’s resiliency and the outpouring of support from the community underscore the power of unity during difficult times. As Mathias bravely navigates his path to recovery, his story will undoubtedly inspire others to prioritize their health and the well-being of their loved ones.