Baby's Nasty Rash Turns Out to Be a Feather Stuck in Her Neck

Say What!? 12

featherMost parents know that it's really not a good idea to put a pillow in the crib with a sleeping baby due to the risk of them accidentally being smothered by it.

But as it turns out, pillows are a whole lot more dangerous than we ever thought, mainly because of what's inside of them.

You're not gonna believe this one: a 7-month-old just had a feather plucked from her neck -- literally.

Mya Whittington's parents brought her to the hospital after a nasty, swollen rash appeared on her neck, and out of all the things it could possibly be, a feather certainly wasn't something they considered.

Originally, the baby was treated with antibiotics for a swollen gland and sent home. But when a "pimple" the size of a golf ball appeared in the same spot, she was brought back to the hospital, and long story short, her pediatrician wound up pulling a two-inch-long black feather out of her neck.

And you'll never guess how the feather probably got there. Mya likely either swallowed or inhaled it from a down pillow, and then it pierced her cheek or throat and was forced out the other side of her body.

What makes this whole scenario even scarier is that the down pillow in the Whittingtons' house was on their bed, and Mya wasn't even near it all that often. (So how in the hell did she manage to ingest a feather from it?)

OMG. Her poor parents must be absolutely horrified, because no one would ever think letting a baby go near a pillow would result in her having a feather lodged under her skin. (Seriously, has the possibility ever crossed your mind?)

This sounds like one of those freak accidents that probably could not have been prevented, and I doubt babies swallow or inhale feathers very often, so there is really no cause for panic. (Don't throw out all your down stuff just yet.)

But there is an important lesson to be learned from Mya's story, and that is to always trust your gut and insist that doctors get to the bottom of things if your baby ever has symptoms that keep getting misdiagnosed. Don't be afraid that you'll come off as overprotective or paranoid, because honestly, either of those two things is better than the alternative.

Would you ever suspect that a down pillow could harm a baby?


Image via misterjingo/Flickr

baby health, safety


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corri... corrinacs

Holy cow.  Reason to stay even farther away from down LOL.  I 'm allergic to it anyway.

Momma... Mommaofaboy11

So scary! My son had a nasty rash/bump show up in his little neck when he was a couple of months old, turned out it was one of his daddy's whiskers that had literally drilled itself into his skin! Never did I dream that it would be an issue for daddy to snuggle LO after shaving...

Kediset Kediset

whoa O.O crazy stuff!

wobbl... wobblesnorts

the feather was most likely on the mother or father's clothing---shoulder....then burping the baby, the feather was inhaled.....or had the feather on shoulder with baby cloth on shoulder also, wiped baby's mouth, and inhaled it.....When you have a newborn, get rid of pillows with feathers, no cats with kitty on so on that hospitals should educate new parents....also do not allow your baby to sleep with you on your bed..........look it up if you don't know what this is about.

toria... toria2316

Maybe she was using the pillow to support the baby while bf'ing? I hope it wasnt in the crib with her!

Alicia Kiner

No such thing as overprotective or paranoid when it comes to your child being sick or unhealthy in any way. 

nonmember avatar Roxanne Hayes

There is NOTHING wrong with co-sleeping so long as you do your research and know HOW to co-sleep properly. There's no reason to advise against a baby sleeping with you in your bed unless you are intoxiated (more than one or two drinks) or high and you shouldn't be doing that while the baby is in your care then anyway. Look THAT up. Know your research before you try to tell parents how to take care of their children.

Leslie Close-Schibig

I don't think there's anything wrong with co-sleeping, nor do I believe that you have to get rid of animals just because you have a baby. It's a matter of being pro-active. If you have a litter box, you move it somewhere where baby can't get to it, and when they are bigger, you teach them to stay out of it. My baby's ped wanted me to get rid of my ferrets just because they COULD accidentally scratch her. I didn't. And nothing bad ever happened because I watched them all when they were together. People just need to use some common sense when it comes to babies and if you don't know something, do some REAL research, not just look it up for people to give you crappy information! I think this was just a freak accident that no one really needs to panic about, but does teach us a lesson in being the best for our kids and getting second, third, fourth opinions if needed to figure out what's going on. 

nonmember avatar Dr. Ellen

Hi. I'm the pediatrician in Kansas that took care of the baby. She wasn't misdiagnosed. Abscesses are difficult cases, especially in infants. Thanks for your input.

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