‘I started asking persons to pray’ - Mother recounts dengue scare

December 03, 2019
1-year-old Azari Maragh on the day he was discharged.
1-year-old Azari Maragh on the day he was discharged.
 Azari Maragh while admitted at the Savannah-La-Mar Hospital.
Azari Maragh while admitted at the Savannah-La-Mar Hospital.

Kimberley Peddie found herself wandering around the Savanna-la-Mar Hospital in Westmoreland asking people to pray for her one-year-old son Azari Maragh, as the thought of him having dengue rattled her mind.

The Belmont, Westmoreland resident says that matters were made worse because doctors communicated with her minimally.

"I was very terrified because I heard of cases where children, especially, died from dengue. I was so scared ... I started asking persons to pray. I cried because I didn't know what the outcome would be. He had no appetite, was very lethargic, almost always sleeping, and he cried in pain."

Peddie told THE STAR that the lack of communication from the doctors sent her into a frenzy.

"Seeing those drips and injections he had got pained my heart. It was day three and no one communicated to me what the possible diagnosis may be. My son was still not seen by the doctor. I kept asking questions and explained to them that he couldn't talk, so I wouldn't know what pain he was feeling as he was crying," she said.


Azari was staying with his aunt on Sunday, November 17, when she realised he had an usually high fever.

Shortly after, he started vomiting. After giving him Panadol, Peddie took him to see a private doctor.

"He said he might have a chest infection. He prescribed antibiotics, nose drops and allergy medicine. He was active the night we went home ... I gave him the medicine, but he vomited that same night. I started to Google dengue symptoms but was in denial because I took precautions with him. I always used repellent on him and I have a zapper," she said.

The following Monday, she decided to take her son to the hospital, where she begged patients to allow her son to be treated before them.

"I still had to wait because the doctors were changing shifts. I had to go back to the general waiting area. Hours passed and I couldn't hear one name being called over the intercom," she said.

It was not until eight hours later that she heard her son's name being called. Azari was then admitted to the paediatric ward.

"The doctors said it's a possibility he might have dengue. They gave him Panadol every four hours. I was told to keep a close eye on him for bleeding and discolouration of skin. So even though a blood test came back negative, he could still have dengue," she said.

It was not until four days later when Peddie was able to breathe a sigh of relief as she was told "the dengue left his system".

"Last Saturday, after series of blood tests, I was told he has been improving and his platelets have gone up. He also started eating, so they said he doesn't need any more drip. He was discharged on Sunday because he had fought a good fight and the dengue left his system," she said.

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