Tick bite temporarily paralyzes 3-year-old

Story highlights

  • The Lewis family became concerned when Evelyn couldn't stand
  • An emergency doctor suspected a tick bite and found one on her scalp

(CNN)A normal bedtime routine turned into a trip to the emergency room for an Oregon couple and their 3-year-old after she experienced partial paralysis because of a tick bite.

Amanda Lewis of La Grande described the scare on Facebook, saying her daughter, Evelyn, became fussy after a bath on May 12 and couldn't stand.
Amanda Lewis and her husband, Lantz, posted a video of their daughter still struggling to stand the next morning; the couple asked family members who are nurses for help figuring what was wrong. The video has since been watched more than 17 million times.
    "Evelyn started acting a little weird last night around bedtime. She didn't want to stand up after her bath to get into her pajamas. I helped her and got her in bed. She was a little fussy last night and I ended up sleeping in bed with her all night," Amanda Lewis posted.
    The girl's symptoms began to get worse, and since Lantz has a history with cancer, they rushed Evelyn to the ER.
    Lantz Lewis told CNN, "I was in the Navy, and they found a rare brain tumor typically found in children. I couldn't run straight, and I felt dizzy, so our minds starting going to that."
    At the hospital, the doctor told the couple he had seen fewer than a dozen children Evelyn's age with similar symptoms over the past 15 years and suggested the cause may be a tick.
    "He combed one side of her head and then started combing the back and found the tick," Lantz said. "He left, got some gloves and a pair of tweezers and pulled it off."
    The doctor found a dog tick on Evelyn and told the couple they are not the type that carry Lyme disease.
    Goudarz Molaei, a research scientist at the Connecticut Agricultural Experiment Station, says he has seen larger numbers of ticks this year and is predicting more Lyme infections because of higher infection rates among them.