Middletown, 2-year-old hospitalized for days with 3 different viruses

MIDDLETOWN, Ohio — A Middletown child was hospitalized for several days with three different viruses at the same time and his family described the ordeal to ABC News.

The ordeal began the first week of September when the Jackson family returned from vacation at Walt Disney World. Their 2-year-old Wilder caught the flu and she ran her course and — at first — it appears to have recovered, the Jacksons told ABC News.

But Wilder became feverish again.

His parents gave him medicine, but the fevers came and went for about six weeks, his parents said.

One Friday night, Wilder’s fever soared to 103 degrees, so the family went to the emergency room at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center. There, they were told “it’s just a virus” and sent home, said Ciara Jackson, Wilder’s mother.

“They took his temperature twice and then sent us home – because his fever had gone – because we gave them Tylenol,” she said.

The parents said that on Sunday Wilder’s fever had risen to 105 degrees and he was hallucinating.

“He started hallucinating,” Ciara told ABC News. “I thought he was outside. We were inside on the couch, and he was like, ‘I want to come in. I have to get away from the dinosaur.'”

Wilder’s continued hallucinations, crying and shaking prompted parents to take him back to the ER.

“It was kind of like the parental instinct – we have to go in,” Ciara said.

The Jacksons then went to the emergency room at Dayton Children’s Hospital. The parents said doctors were puzzled that Wilder had recurring fevers but no other symptoms.

After a slew of tests, Wilder was simultaneously diagnosed with rhinovirus, enterovirus, and adenovirus.

All three viruses are generally mild in children, but are often more serious when they occur together.

Ciara said doctors believed the adenovirus was the main owner of Wilder’s issues.

After his diagnosis, Wilder was transferred to the children’s main campus in downtown Dayton.

Wilder received the last bed.

Due to an upsurge in RSV and respiratory viruses across the country, many hospitals, including Dayton’s Children’s Hospital, are operating near capacity.

“We felt very lucky to have entered,” Ciara told ABC News.

Wilder Jackson 2

Ciara Jackson on ABC News

Wilder Jackson, 2, playing while recovering at Dayton Children’s Hospital.

Ciara said her cousin, who works at Dayton’s Children’s, said they use a pre-op room for regular hospitals due to lack of space, which a spokesperson for Dayton Children confirmed via ABC News in as part of hospital emergency planning.

Wilder was discharged from hospital on Wednesday morning having been fever-free for 24 hours.

Wilder wasn’t the only Jackson family member to fall ill, either.

Frankie, Wilder’s one-year-old sister, also suffered from a cold so bad he sent her to the emergency room. There she stayed for six hours and received IV fluids.

“She tested negative for RSV, flu and COVID – so hers was really just respiratory,” Ciara said.

Ciara said Frankie is doing much better now.

The Jacksons now tell parents to trust their instincts.

“I would say trust your instincts and make sure you’re your child’s advocate and push for answers,” Ciara said.

Wilder’s father also argued that you should follow your instincts.

“You know, you know your kid,” he said.

READ MORE:
‘Lack of beds not a problem’: Cincinnati Children’s prepared for possible increase in RSV cases
Several states, including Ohio and Indiana, see early rise in pediatric respiratory viruses
What is RSV, who is at risk and why cases tend to rise this time of year

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