Cold Sores Usually Caused By Herpes Are Contagious And Can Be Passed Through Contact

A blister from a cold sore. (Image via National Health Service)

Kaylah Merritt, one, spent four days in the hospital as a result of being kissed on the lips by a family member who had a cold sore.

Her mother recounts the horrifying experience of seeing Kaylah develop a painful purple rash that spread all over her body, according to the Daily Mirror.

Her parents, Brogan Thomas and Connor Merritt, both 22, who are from County Durham, U.K, immediately rushed her to the A&E department at Darlington Memorial Hospital for treatment.

Kaylah was diagnosed with eczema herpeticum, caused by the herpes simplex virus. She needed two rounds of antibiotics and several different creams just to soothe her skin, doctors told the Daily Mail. Her condition very easily could have become fatal.


Kaylah developed a painful purple rash that spread all over her body. (Image via Daily Mirror)

A Simple Kiss That Could Have Been Fatal

Brogan, who is a stay-at-home mother, said she cried after doctors told her how dangerous it was. She realised she nearly lost Kaylah to a ‘silly’ kiss.

“Connor was shocked and couldn’t believe all this was down to a kiss too.”

“If we hadn’t gone to the hospital quickly, it could have been very dangerous, we could have lost her.”

When Kaylah showed signs of the rash, her parents realised that her cries were different than usual.

“Kaylah was crying so hard, I knew it could only mean she was in pain.”

“We were at home and I was about to put her in the bath when I suddenly saw all the marks on her legs.”

“It was an awful nightmare, there were purple rashes everywhere and Kaylah was sobbing her heart out.”

Previously, Kaylah had also contracted meningitis and had to go through a lumbar puncture to survive. This greatly added to Brogan’s fears.

Kaylah was diagnosed with eczema herpeticum, caused by the herpes simplex virus. (Image via Daily Mirror)

Staying Calm to the Hospital

“My fiancé was petrified, but he kept me calm and made sure Kaylah was calm too. I instantly knew we had to take her to the hospital,” she said.

“The doctors told us that someone with a cold sore must have kissed her on the lips and because babies’ immune systems are not strong enough, she developed the rash.”

Kaylah is now out of danger, but she still needs to go for weekly doctor’s appointments. She also need to take daily medication until the virus is completely gone from her body.

As a result of this scare, Kaylah parents are now warning others to be aware of this risk.

“I just want other parents to know, you don’t have to be a physically ill to harm a baby—you can just be a carrier of the virus and still affect them.”

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