A family of five had a nightmare when their youngest was rushed to A&E with a hair wrapped around two of his toes, a medical issue known as hair tourniquet syndrome which can lead to a stop in blood circulation, and possibly amputation.
Mum Katie, from the blog Mummy, Daddy and Me Makes Three, took to Facebook to write a detailed post about their experience, alongside troubling photo of her baby son’s sore toes.
‘Last night I posted a post about how I had to take our baby boy to a & e because he had got one of my hairs wrapped so tightly round his toes. I must admit if I had read a post like this previously I would have probably thought ‘oh seriously a & e, surely they could have removed it themselves?’
‘Apparently according to the doctors that saw us last night this is a relatively uncommon condition, but it’s still more common than you might think.
‘It’s called a hair tourniquet and in some cases it can be really serious, in fact our doctor said if we hadn’t noticed it when we did our baby boy may have even lost the worst affected toe.’
We spoke to Katie, who told us about what had happened that evening.
‘Our baby boy had been absolutely fine all day and when I went to get him undressed and ready for his bath that evening I noticed that his toes one one foot were blue and bleeding.
‘I was completely shocked and realised that he had one of my hairs tied so tightly around his toes that they had swollen up. We tried for ages to get the hair off from around the worst affected toe, but by that time his little toe was so swollen that it was impossible to get to.
‘We rushed him to a and e where we were seen really quickly, and it took three doctors hours to try and get the hair off, in the end they had to cut part of his skin and also use tweezers.’
‘It’s called a hair tourniquet and often ladies lose a lot of hair post partum. That hair can get into a baby’s sleepsuit or even in their nappy and then as they move around all day it can get tighter and tighter around the toes or even little boy’s willies.’
Katie also spoke to us about how her Facebook post has been received, and her surprise at how often this has happened to people she knows.
‘I had absolutely no idea that this could happen but since putting it on Facebook I have been shocked at the amount of people who have said that it happened to their baby, or to a friend’s little one. So shocking and scary.’
Luckily, Katie’s little boy turned out fine, despite his awful time at hospital. Katie wrote in her post how she hopes that her experience will send the message on to other parents, so that they might know what to do if this were to ever happen to them.
‘I just wanted to share this as we have three children and had never heard of it before. Our little boy is just sore now but absolutely fine, but it could have been so much worse. Judging from some of the messages I got, it happens more frequently than you might think. So I just wanted to share this as it’s something to bear in mind if you have a baby.’
Hundreds of people have liked, shared and commented on the post, writing things to wish the family well, and sharing their own experiences with hair tourniquets.
‘I heard about this years ago and am always checking fingers and toes for hairs wrapped around… you’d be surprised how many times you find the odd one! It’s shocking,’ wrote one user.