Heartbroken family of healthy girl, 16, reveal she died just a week after getting flu

Mail Online | 1/17/2020 | Natalie Rahhal Acting Us Health Editor For Dailymail.com
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An Ohio teenager fell ill with flu on Christmas Eve. She died on New Year's Eve.

In the last several weeks, nearly 40 children have died of the flu as the virus spreads across the US early.

Kaylee - Roberts - Children - Virus

Kaylee Roberts is among the latest children to succumb to the virus.

The 16-year-old had been otherwise healthy - though she hadn't gotten a flu shot - then she started to feel sick four days before Christmas.

'She - Kaylee - Uncle - Matthew - Roberts

'She was a healthy, happy, normal 16-year-old,' said Kaylee's uncle, Matthew Roberts told CNN.

'We knew she had the flu, but we figured it would knock her on her butt for a few days, and then she'd get better. We were never expecting such a grave outcome.'

Flu - Year - Children

The flu has ramped up much faster than usual this year, and it's been particularly unkind to children.

An unusual strain - influenza B - has been unexpectedly dominant.

Children - Teenagers - Systems - Strain - Antibodies

Children and teenagers' immune systems are less likely to have been previously exposed to this strain, meaning they don't have antibodies against it built up.

This strain has accounted for 28 pediatric deaths so far this year. Influenza A viruses have killed 11 children.

Strain - Virus - Kaylee

It's not clear which strain of the virus Kaylee had.

Doctors know why B viruses tend to cause more infections - and more serious ones - in kids, but it's not clear why the illness becomes so dire for some and not others, excluding children with otherwise weakened immune systems.

Kaylee - Symptoms - Days - Christmas - Eve

Kaylee toughed out her symptoms for a few days, but by late on Christmas Eve, her parents were getting concerned.

They rushed Kaylee to the ER. It didn't take long for doctors there to confirm she had the flu.

Uncle - CNN - Doctors - Dad - Time

Her uncle told CNN the doctors gave her dad a hard time about not getting Kaylee vaccinated...
(Excerpt) Read more at: Mail Online
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