timberland fleece Henrico husband warns others after her flu death
GLEN ALLEN, Va. At 28 years old, Heather Stagg is dealing with the loss of her mom, who she said died as a result of complications from the flu.
“They said that the flu had triggered the double pneumonia, which then triggered the septic shock because her body just couldn’t fight it off,” said Stagg. “I miss her, that was my best friend.”
That same weekend, Kevin Baynes Jr., age seven, also went to the doctor. Baynes’ parents took him to the Gretna Emergency room Saturday, reported affiliate WDBJ, where he was diagnosed with strep throat and the flu.
Doctors sent him home with medication to treat his strep throat.
If the child’s flu death is confirmed, it would be the first child in Virginia whose death was attributed to the flu this season.
Both deaths came within 24 hours, or less, of their visits to the hospital.
Because of the timeline and symptoms leading up to Linda’s death, the family reached out to CBS 6, hoping to spread the word to warn other.
Kevin Baynes family said he died from the flu.
“A week ago, I had just gotten out of the hospital,” Stagg said.
His emphysema keeps him in and out of the hospital.
“She was there every day for four days,” he said.
On Wednesday Linda didn’t feel well and said she was getting a sore throat.
“she said her throat was getting worse.”
Friday was spent laying down and Linda didn’t have a fever but continued to feel badly so they went to the hospital, where she tested positive for the flu.
Jim said that within hours her condition worsened.
“Three hours in the emergency room, all of a sudden they said they had to take her to ICU,” Jim said. Saturday, he lost the love of his life.
“It killed my wife,” Stagg. “I mean she was 59 years old.”
Jim wants everyone to know if you feel sick go to your doctor, don’t wait.
“I don’t want anybody else to go through this,” he said.
“We’re seeing more widespread activity than we’ve seen since the H1N1 pandemic in 2009,” said Dr. Michael Stevens, the Associate Chair in the Division of Infectious Diseases at VCU Medical Center.
“One of the circulating viruses, because there’s multiple different viruses that can make up influenza, is a particular nasty version of the virus called H3N2. That can be particularly hard on the elderly and young kinds,” said Dr. Stevens.
Health experts also believe this year’s flu vaccine is only about 30% effective for H3N2 strain.
But doctors, including pediatricians, say the vaccine is the best way to lessen the severity of the virus.
This flu season is fierce and has already claimed the lives of at least 37 children in the United States, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
There were 11,965 laboratory confirmed flu related hospitalizations reported from October 1 to January 20. The number of people infected with influenza is believed to be much higher because not everyone goes to their doctor when they are sick, nor do doctors test every patient.
Added to those scary stats, the World Health Organization estimates that annual flu epidemics result in about 3 to 5 million cases of severe illness globally and 290,000 to 650,