Visalia girl dies from infection doctors misdiagnosed as flu

Tuesday, January 9, 2018
12-year-old Visalia girl dies from infection originally misdiagnosed as the flu
Family members of a 12-year old girl who died suddenly are warning people of symptoms that coincide with the flu but are not the flu.

VISALIA, Calif. -- Loved ones say Alyssa Alcaraz showed signs of having the flu and, with so many people being impacted by it, they were certain that is what she had.

But it was not until she died that they learned the young girl had a bacterial infection that was quickly moving inside her body.

Family members of 12-year-old Alyssa Alcaraz are cherishing a video of the pre-teen doing what she loved most, singing.

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No one thought this would be the middle school student's last concert but 10 days later, she unexpectedly died.

Mariah Alcaraz recalls the day her sister got sick. "I remember she came home from school and she was throwing up and I thought oh she's probably got food poisoning, she's going to be OK," she said.

But it was not food poisoning.

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Alyssa's mom, who did not want to go on camera, says doctors told them her daughter had the flu. After a few days of staying home from school and not getting better, they took Alyssa back to urgent care.

That is when a physician realized the young girl's oxygen levels were low. She was immediately rushed to Kaweah Delta Medical Center by ambulance.

Within hours, Alyssa's organs started shutting down and her family says she coded six times. By 2:50 Sunday afternoon, the vibrant girl with a passion for music died.

Her death certificate says she went into cardiac arrest and septic shock from a strep blood infection -- an infection no one in her family knew she had.

Now they are left holding onto memories and a cellphone video where Alyssa reminded them of how much they meant to her.

If you would like to donate to the Alcaraz family, you can visit their GoFundMe here.

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