4-year-old girl who wasn't vaccinated left blind after getting the flu

4-year-old girl who wasn't vaccinated left blind after getting the flu

A four-year-old girl, who didn't get vaccinated this season, has been left blind after contracting the flu.

Jade DeLucia's mother, Amanda Phillips, rushed the child to hospital on Christmas Eve after her fever became dangerously high. Speaking to NBC news, she said "I looked down at her and her eyes were in the back of her head."

Per the publication, DeLucia suffered a seizure when she arrived at the hospital, and was airlifted to the children's hospital at the University of Iowa, where doctors told Phillips that her daughter had acute necrotizing encephalopathy - a swelling of the brain which caused her to lose her eyesight.

The disease is extremely rare, affecting around one in five million people.

Watch a news report on the story below: 

It is not yet clear whether the Iowa native, who spent over two weeks in hospital, will regain her vision. Doctors reportedly told Phillips that they won't know if her daughter's eyesight loss is permanent for six months.

"It affected the part of her brain that perceives sight, and we don’t know if she’s going to get her vision back," Dr. Theresa Czech, told CNN.

"In about three to six months from now we’ll know. Whatever recovery she has at six months, that’s likely all she’s going to get." she continued, detailing that the child may also suffer cognitive and developmental issues because of the damage to her brain - but that this will be assessed in coming months.

Phillips has since expressed disbelief at her daughter's progress, telling CNN, "I think she’s doing fabulous."

She said that she had her daughter vaccinated last March, hoping that it would still be effective for the current season. However, doctors say that it's imperative to vaccinate children in the autumn prior to each season.

"We want parents to know they should get a flu shot every season," Phillips concluded.