A 15-year-old boy undergoing cancer treatment was diagnosed with a deadly blood infection, which appeared to be caused by the mom injecting feces into her son’s IV lines.
41-year-old Tiffany Alberts of Indiana has been accused of battery and neglect of a dependent causing serious bodily injury. She is also expected to undergo child abuse charges, and prosecutors believe that she can be related to another case, where another boy in the same hospital was diagnosed with similar blood infections.
Video surveillance shows Tiffany Alberts injecting her son’s IV lines wit a syringe at the Riley Hospital for Children.
A mother sabotaging her son’s cancer treatment
In September, the boy received his first round of chemotherapy. He returned a couple of days later, suffering from fever and diarrhea. Doctors saw that his blood test results showed the presence of fecal matter. His mom was questioned and was asked what did she inject in the boy’s IV line. At first, Alberts said that it was water to “flush the line,” but eventually she confessed that she had knowingly injected her son’s IV line with feces more than once. According to Alberts, she did it to forcibly move her son to another medical unit where treatment was reportedly “better.”
In the meantime, the boy has recovered after being hospitalized for months and being submitted to surgery procedures. Although he is in a better state of health, doctors fear that his leukemia will be harder to cure due to the mother’s ill-advised intervention. Doctors warned that the boy would have surely died if he had been submitted to another round of chemotherapy while having a blood infection.
A Tri-County Schools teacher, Alberts was arrested but is currently being held out on a bond as she resides in Springfield, Ohio.
Injecting blood on the child’s bloodstream is one of the worst things Alberts could do, seeing that leukemia is cancer of the body’s blood-forming tissues, which are mainly comprised by the blood marrow and the body’s lymphatic system. The most common types of leukemia affect white blood cells, making them unable to protect the body against infections. These damaged white blood cells don’t stop growing and can crowd the normal blood cells, causing anemia, bleeding, and other symptoms.
The main ways to treat leukemia are chemotherapy, radiation therapy, stem cell transplant, and targeted therapy, which stops cancer cells from multiplying by using specialized drugs.
Chemotherapy is basically putting drugs directly to the bloodstream so they can affect all of the body’s cells. It can be administered by mouth, with creams, injections, and catheters. Chemotherapy usually comes with nausea and vomiting, and in some cases, it may cause infertility. These symptoms add up badly to those related to blood infection due to fecal matter, which could have led the boy to a fatal episode of fever and dehydration, seeing that his blood was particularly unhealthy due to his leukemia diagnosis.
Currently, there are no confirmed methods to prevent leukemia other than avoiding exposure to radiation, chemical benzene, smoking, and tobacco use.