Six-year-old girl dies from tick bite on family holiday


Six-year-old girl dies from tick bite on family holiday

A six-year-old girl from Black Mountain, North Carolina has died after been bitten by a tick during a family holiday in Texas.

Emilee Russell died last week from what doctors believe to be a bacterial infection called Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever, which is transmitted by ticks.

The Daily Mail reports that Emilee was with her parents, Charlie and Beth Russell, and her twin bother Charlie when she was bitten.

A Facebook page, called In Loving Memory of Emilee Russell, has been set up and several fundraising events are taking place to help the Russell family cover the cost of Emilee's medical expenses.

According to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, there has been a rise in cases of Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever in the last decade. Many of those affected can recover provided their symptoms, which include fever, nausea, headache and stomach pain, are diagnosed and treated quickly.

However, in many cases - including Emilee's - the illness isn't diagnosed in time.

The CDC website says: "Rocky Mountain spotted fever can be severe or even fatal if not treated in the first few days symptoms. Patients who are treated early may recover quickly on outpatient medication, while those who experience a more severe course may require intravenous antibiotics, prolonged hospitalisation or intensive care."

Friends and relatives have paid tribute to Emiliee on Facebook, and are hoping to raise awareness of the illness to prevent the same thing happening to another child.

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