Cooper Wuthrich, 12-year-old son of Kale and Dani Wuthrich of Montpelier, is in Primary Children’s Hospital in Salt Lake City suffering from a syndrome called MIS-C, or Multiple Inflammatory System in Children.
Cooper first started with a fever of 102 and 103 degrees that couldn’t be broken with fluids by the doctors. He was in the hospital for two days before he had a late Saturday night ride in an ambulance to Salt Lake City. He was then in intensive care in Primary Children’s for three days.
It was found that Cooper had swollen joints and internal organs along with blood clots in his lower left lung. He is being treated with different medications such as steroids and antibiotics.
It was not the flu; it was one hundred percent related to COVID-19. MIS-C in children is a serious condition linked to COVID-19 (children who have recently been diagnosed with COVID-19 or been recently exposed to COVID-19). The symptoms are similar to those of Kawasaki disease and toxic shock syndrome, but it is a distinct condition. MIS-C affects the organs and tissues of the body such as the heart, lungs, blood vessels, kidneys, digestive system, brain, skin, or eyes, which become severely inflamed. Signs and symptoms depend on which area of the body are affected.
Children who have MIS-C eventually get better with medical care, but some kids rapidly get worse to the point where their lives are at risk.
Signs and symptoms of the MIS-C can be: vomiting, diarrhea; pain in the stomach; skin rash; feeling unusually tired; fast heartbeat; rapid breathing; red eyes; redness or swelling of the lips and tongue; redness or swelling of the hands or feet; headache, dizziness or lightheadedness; or enlarged lymph nodes. Emergency warning signs are severe stomach pain, difficulty breathing, bluish lips or face, new confusion, or inability to wake up or stay awake.
The exact cause is not known yet, but it appears to be an excessive immune response related to COVID-19. Most children are between the ages of 3 and 12 years old with and average age of 8 years old. Some cases have also occurred in older children and in babies.
A message needs to be given about the seriousness of this syndrome, and Cooper’s parents want to send that message to everyone.
Kale Wuthrich wants people in Bear Lake to know that we have to get above and beyond the idea that the COVID-19 virus is “fake.” It is not fake – it is real, and it can have long-lasting effects such as the one Cooper is experiencing now.
Kale says, “We need to be more accountable. We need to come into the reality of what is happening. The idea that it is fake is embarrassing. MASKS NEED TO BE WORN! If this is how the disease is going to affect our children moving forward, they need to wear masks in school. I met with several specialists and they begged me to bring back the message that the kids need to wear masks in school. The kids take on the risk of having what has happened to Cooper happen to them. We need to educate our children and our adults. I was standing in line at the store and heard a teacher say ‘I’m never going to wear a mask.’ We buckle up our seatbelts when we drive, and we put on a coat when it’s cold. Why can’t we wear a mask when there is COVID?”
Cooper was a gifted and blessed athlete. He was going to do something with it. Now, he will never do those things. He will not be skiing this year. He will not be playing basketball. He can’t ride his motorbike anymore. He will have a heart injury for the rest of his life. All because of a syndrome related to having COVID-19.
Kale and Dani ask, “Is it worth it because we don’t want to have our children wear a mask or wear one ourselves?”
Think about it.