Imagine your child has a fever, so you give her some Children's Motrin. And the next thing you know, your child is blind and 90 percent of her skin has fallen off! This is reportedly what happened to 16-year-old Samantha Reckis, who fell ill in 2003. After taking ibuprofen, she suffered a life-threatening allergic reaction -- despite the fact that she'd taken the medicine before with no adverse results. Samantha's parents sued and have just been awarded up to $109 million.
Samantha, who was 7 when she took the Motrin, apparently suffered toxic epidermal necrolysis. She went blind and 90 percent of her skin fell off due to a rare skin reaction. Says her family attorney:
It's like having your skin burned off of you. Imagine your worst sunburn times 1,000. It's an absolutely devastating condition.
Samantha went into a coma, and she suffered mild brain damage. She also had to have 19 surgeries!
I can't imagine what it's like to give your kid some medicine that millions give their kids every year, and then have this happen. Unbelievable! So scary. I know some people can suffer severe allergic reactions to pretty much anything, but this is really severe. It almost killed her. And considering she'd taken ibuprofin before, you'd think she'd be safe. Terrifying.
Should you just skip the ibuprofen entirely, not risk it? There are apparently some natural alternatives -- a site called Green Med Info lists things like ginger, arnica, olive oil, and Chinese skullcap. Would these really work on a fever?
How would you know if your child is allergic to ibuprofen? Some signs are facial swelling, hives, skin blisters, difficulty breathing, and going into shock. But by the time these symptoms come on, it could be too late!
Millions of children take medicines every year that are helpful and don't cause any damage whatsoever -- so this is really tricky and scary. You should consult your doctor and your own gut instinct.
Does your child have any scary allergies?
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