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Boy ‘fighting for his life’ as rare Covid-linked disease stopped heart working

A six-year-old has been left "fighting for his life" after his heart stopped working properly due to a rare childhood disease linked to Covid.

Oliver Patterson’s blood pressure plummeted and his body broke out in inflammatory welts before he was rushed to hospital by mum, Laura.

Doctors at Darent Valley Hospital, Dartford, initially thought he had tonsillitis but a rash quickly spread to his face and his eyes swelled up so badly he couldn't see.

The little boy spent four nights in intensive care "fighting for his life" at at Evelina London Children’s Hospital and was diagnosed with PIMS-TS, a condition similar to Kawasaki Disease.

Laura said seeing her son in that state was the "hardest" day of her life, and she couldn't believe how quickly he fell ill.

She said: "Oliver was fighting for his life.

"His heart function deteriorated and he was given different drugs. It was the hardest day of our lives. Yet the day before he fell ill he’d been at the seaside enjoying himself."

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The six-year-old's condition began to improve when doctors put him on steroid treatment, with mum Laura claiming he "turned a corner" within 48 hours.

Oliver is now back at home with his family but his mum said she'd like to raise awareness about the severity of the rare condition.

Laura said: "We don’t want to tell Oliver’s story to scare people, as it’s an incredibly rare condition, but we do want to raise awareness."

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The mum added: "It’s a worrying time with the country opening up, now we know how vulnerable children can be."

PIMS can cause swelling throughout the body, including the heart muscles, with symptoms including a rash, prolonged fever, stomach ache, diarrhoea, bloodshot eyes, a red tongue or red cracked lips.

Experts say up to 600 British kids have developed paediatric multi-system inflammatory system, 200 of which have ended up in intensive care.

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