Ticks are small arachnids, part of the order Parasitiformes. They are ectoparasites (external parasites), living by feeding on the blood of mammals, birds, and sometimes reptiles and amphibians.
If you have animals or pets at home be sure to have them checked and treated for ticks because little did people know that a single tick bite is capable of transferring several diseases like Lyme disease, Rocky Mountain Spotted fever etc. just to name a few.
In Indianapolis, a 2-year-old toddler (Kenley Ratliff) died of what doctors suspected as Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever, it’s a disease from a tick bites that carry the Bacterium Rickettsia rickettsii. When this bacteria enters the bloodstream, it may cause symptoms such as fever, headaches, abdominal pain, vomiting, muscle pain and rashes within two to 14 days.
Kenley and her family had gone camping 10 days before her symptoms kicked in. Kenley started with a fever of 100.8, they went to the hospital and was advised to rest and keep hydrated. Her fever went up so they went to another hospital There, they gave her antibiotics and she was also tested positive for strep throat and was given more antibiotics. But after four to five days her fever hadn't dropped and she was so weak. Then a light pink rashes appeared, her mom Kayla even had to hold Kenley’s head up.
Until another antibiotic administered, the pink rashes turned into dark purple red. Doctors at Riley Children's Hospital suspected that Kenley might have Rocky Mountain spotted fever.
According to Dr. Chandy John (the pediatric infectious disease specialist who treated Kenley). They put her on Doxycycline. It was hard to know if the treatment would have any difference because the longer you wait the less likely patients are to respond, because Kenley had come in a very advanced state of the disease.
Diagnosis has not been confirmed since the autopsy report has not been available yet.
Parents must be really careful and be serious about ticks. We should watch out for those symptoms, because the disease can also be fatal if it is not treated in the first few days.