To avoid accidents, most parents spend a lot of time making sure that their homes are completely child proof but sometimes, accidents happen and it happens in a heartbeat.
This is exactly what happened to a family in India.
Shocking images have emerged showing how a critically ill toddler fighting for his life in hospital after drinking paint thinner thinking it was a bottle of water.
Gitvin Challa, just three, picked up a plastic bottle with filled with clear-colored paint thinner he thought was water and gulped it down before his dad spotted what he had done.
Taxi driver Bhaktavatsalam Reddy said he had been painting the family home in Andhra Pradesh, southern India, when the accident happened.
However, now the child is being cared for in an intensive care unit, and has been diagnosed with multiple organ failure – which his family are fundraising to pay for treatment for.
Reddy, said: “Gitvin was looking for water. I never thought even in my wildest dreams that he would pick that bottle up and drink.”
He must have had 10-20 ml. For a child, even that can destroy the insides.
“He was conscious and in great pain the entire time.”
Reddy described how the little boy screamed in agony for 10 hours, after being taken to a specialist clinic.
He said: “Paint thinner in a bottle looks like water. I took my eyes off him for a minute and he chugged the paint thinner. Now, he is in the ICU, with organs failing and airway affected. We are struggling to bring him back from the deep end.He was there for 10 hours in terrible pain. 10 hours he was conscious and screaming. After that, my son has not opened his eyes.”
After being moved between various facilities, Gitvin is being treated in Kanchi Kamakoti Child’s Trust Hospital in Chennai, the capital of eastern state Tamil Nadu.
Reddy is remaining by his son’s bedside, while his wife stays at home with their younger daughter.
The taxi driver earns just 15,000 Rupees a month, and faces enormous medical bills racking up to pay for Gitvin’s treatment.
The family anticipates costs will continue to rise to pay for their son’s care.
Mr Reddy said: “My wife is broken beyond words to have one of her children fighting for life without being by his side.My friends have been very supportive, but away from home in Chennai, alone with my son, it is very trying.”
Gitvin is currently hooked up to an ECMO machine, to support his organs and oxygenate his blood.
He is said to be stable but will need to be kept under observation.
Mr Reddy added: “Looking at him on this bed under so many tubes, wires, and machines, my heart just breaks. My son is fragile in front of these things. I just hope they can save his life. Two days ago, he was jumping on his bed like a bouncy ball. I would give anything to see him do that instead of lying unconscious, struggling to stay alive in this hospital bed.”
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