Maryland boy in ICU with the Flu - New York News

Maryland boy in ICU with the Flu

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Andrew Tucker Andrew Tucker
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WASHINGTON, DC -

A six year old Maryland boy is in the pediatric intensive care unit at Georgetown University Hospital fighting for his life after coming down with the flu.

Andrew Tucker has been battling it for more a week. First at his pediatrician's office, then the emergency room at Shady Grove Adventist Hospital, and now in the ICU at Georgetown University Hospital.

"It's indescribable, unbelievable, what we've been through", mom Kathy Tucker says of the ordeal.

Andrew was flown by helicopter to Georgetown University Hospital Friday from Shady Grove after taking a turn for the worse.

"I know when we got to Shady Grove they said his body was about to give out on him", dad Aaron Tucker says.

That's despite doing everything their pediatrician and the ER doctors told them to at home.

"We called the pediatrician and she said take him back to Shady Grove. He was admitted, and when things went downhill he was medevac'd to Georgetown."

Andrew is stable now, and the family says he's getting excellent care.. Relatives are caring for Kathy and Aaron's other two sons, ages 4 and 13, so they can spend every second with Andrew-- who up until a few days ago, was a perfectly healthy six year old.

"We never had any health issues, " Kathy Tucker says. " "He played basketball, football, he was on the swim team, just a beautiful bright little boy. The doctors say it was 100 percent the flu."

The parents say it was the warning signs of respiratory distress that they learned in a TV interview with Shady Grove's Pediatric ER Medical Director, Dr. Erik Schobitz that gave them a heads up about what to look for, that compelled them to rush him back to hospital, life saving information they want every parent to hear again.

" So you look for certain such as breathing from their nostrils. So each time they breathe their nostrils pop out. Or they have retraction of the ribs. Their rib cage will suck in when they breathe. Or right in the front of their neck. The neck will suck in. They'll have abdominal breathing so their belly comes out and their chest caves in with each breath. If you notice those things, it's definitely time to come to the emergency room", Dr Schobitz says.

Advice the Tuckers will never forget.

"Really look for those signs, and if you see them, don't mess around. Just check it out", Aaron Tucker says.

"You know your kid better than anyone", Kathy Tucker says. "I just feel so blessed we got him back to the hospital when we did."

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