According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), 20 children under the age of 18 have died in the 2016-2017 flu season. The numbers could be much higher as not all states report deaths as timely. After a bout with the flu, 19-year-old Kayla Linton who was otherwise healthy, died of sudden cardiac arrest.
Her mother had taken her to the doctor who diagnosed the flu. A few days later, she did not seem to be getting much better. She got up to go to the bathroom and began having trouble breathing. She stopped breathing altogether and emergency personnel could not bring her back.
People with heart disease and those who have suffered a stroke are said to be the most at risk of having complications from the flu, according to the CDC. Linton did not have either, that her parents were aware of. Although teens can develop elevated levels of cholesterol in the blood circulation which can lead to heart attack, the symptoms may go unnoticed until too late.
It is not known yet if Linton suffered from symptoms of Hypertension or elevated cholesterol levels. However, it would explain why her life was cut so short after suffering from the flu. If symptoms of either are present in healthy, active teens, it could be they are genetically predisposed to the disorder. Should they complain of chest pains after exercise, get them to the doctor.
The doctor will run a series of tests in order to determine the cause of the chest pain, if any. Tests will also be ordered to find out whether hypertension or high cholesterol are present. If so, the doctor will need to try to find out what the possible cause may be and then take measures to try to lower the elevated levels as needed.
Linton was a very active teenager who enjoyed playing lacrosse, basketball, and she ran track. She was a healthy and happy young girl whose life was suddenly aborted by complications from illness. Her sudden death sheds light on the fact that flu can kill and that even young people are not exempt from succumbing to complications from an illness. It is not to be taken lightly.
What do you believe could have been done further to spare Kayla Linton’s life? Let’s discuss here or on Twitter: @lcarterwriter.