Young girl's sudden paralysis caused by tick on her scalp

Mum's parasite warning after daughter was left unable to walk

A mother in MS is urging parents to look out for ticks after her daughter was temporarily paralyzed by a tick bite.

Jessica Griffin shared photos of her daughter, Kailyn, and the tick found on her head on Facebook. "After tons of blood work and a CT of the head UMMC [University of Mississippi Medical Center] has ruled it as tick paralysis!". PLEASE for the love of god check your kids for ticks!

Griffin followed up with a photo of her daughter walking out of the hospital later that evening. Doctors told Griffin it was an uncommon condition called tick paralysis.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention highlight tick paralysis as a rare disease caused by a toxin in the saliva of ticks, particularly the Rocky Mountain wood tick and the American dog tick, typically found in the Rocky Mountain states and the northeast USA, respectively.

Mom at first thought that maybe Kailyn had slept in an awkward position and her legs had gone numb, according to a Facebook post.

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A 5-year-old girl in MS was paralyzed for over a day from a tick bite, an unusual case highlighting the importance of protecting against insects as peak biting season begins.

Women and children are most at risk. Scary is [an] UNDERSTATEMENT!

More than 40 tick species worldwide are known to cause tick paralysis.

Symptoms can take up to seven days to develop. The disease usually starts with fatigue and muscle pains.

Here is more about how and why ticks can cause paralysis and worse.

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The main treatment for tick paralysis is completely removing the tick, including all of its mouthparts, since they contain the salivary glands that produce the toxin.

"I went to brush her hair to put it in a ponytail and noticed she could barely talk and when I pulled her hair back that's when I seen [sic] the tick". We are being admitted to the hospital for observation and we're hoping her balance gets straightened out!

She posted images to Facebook last week, showing Kailyn in her hospital bed with a splint and an IV connected to her arm.

"Look who is walking out of the hospital!" The condition can become life-threatening if the tick is not removed quickly, with the potential for paralysis to affect respiratory muscles.

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