OKLAHOMA CITY (KFOR) – After a nearly month-long battle with COVID-19, an Oklahoma City toddler is finally turning a corner.
When KFOR first introduced you to Ira Jackson, 1, he was fighting for his life in the ICU.
“It’s a very scary ordeal to think about losing somebody, especially children,” said Sandra Jackson, Ira’s aunt. “It was a nightmare. I didn’t know what I was going to do. We were afraid for my brother, his family, my family, my mother.”
The Jacksons believe Ira’s older sister exposed him to COVID-19 when she battled the virus herself a few weeks ago. For Ira, the sickness started off as a high fever. After taking him to the hospital, doctors discovered the one-year-old had COVID-19 and suffered multiple strokes.
Just over a week ago, doctors told KFOR strokes being a side effect of the virus isn’t all that uncommon.
“COVID-19 leads to hyper inflammation, which can cause inflammation, even within the vessels, which can lead to strokes and clotting,” explained Dr. Donna Tyungu, a Pediatrics Specialist at OU Health. “I would say it’s probably more common in adults, in adult patients, but we absolutely do see it in pediatric patients.”
After his strokes, Jackson said Ira could barely function.
“It was really scary,” said Jackson. “Ira was not able to look at us or respond to us. He didn’t even know we were there. He was unable to talk or walk or do anything.”
But now, the family’s letting out a sigh of relief because Ira’s finally making strides in his recovery.
“He does say a few works. You can tell he’s trying to talk. He moves his mouth. Nothing comes out, but you can tell that he’s trying.”
She added that he can also move his arms, legs and feet now, which is a drastic improvement.
Although he’s significantly better, Jackson still wants her family’s story to serve as a warning for people to take the virus seriously.
“We’re all walking around thinking, you know, it’s bypassed or it’s over or we’re superhuman and we can’t get it and we can,” said Jackson. “It doesn’t pick who it wants. It just goes for it.”
Since KFOR first reported this story, the Jackson’s Go Fund Me has raised thousands of dollars. The family said they are eternally grateful.
“I want to thank KFOR for bringing the story attention,” said Jackson. “I want to thank the good Samaritans of Oklahoma and everybody who has been praying for us and helping us.”