A new mom has issued a warning to fellow parents to check their baby’s toes and fingers for hair, as her son needed surgery after getting a strand wrapped around his digit.
Olivia Quinn, who welcomed Harvey James on June 26, noticed something unusual on his toes as he undressed him ready for his bath.
Her son managed to get a hair wrapped around his baby toe, and what was initially thought to be an easy procedure with scissors to remove at home turned into an hours-long ordeal at two hospitals, ending in an operation
Quinn, from Australia, shared a warning on her TikTok page @oliviaquinn99, on Sunday, saying: “Always check your baby’s fingers and toes!”
The mom filmed Harvey’s left foot, which is bleeding and scabby, as she explained: “It wasn’t this bad when we found the hair!! This video was taken at the hospital after doctors tried cutting it out.”
The clip amassed more than 4 million views, and can be seen here, as Quinn shared a further five clips relating to the incident.
She stressed: “He’s doing amazing. He’s a bloody super trooper. His foot looks great… His toe looks amazing and he’s back to being a happy bubby.”
She uploaded a detailed story-time, as she said: “So this is the hospital story. May I remind you I’m not a god, or a superhero, or anything like that, I’m a human being. And unfortunately these things do happen, they are quite common which I didn’t know about until it happened to me. These things do happen.”
The mom said she, her mom and partner were getting Harvey ready for the bath around 8.30pm, when she spotted something amiss on his feet.
“So I thought it was a bit of fluff from his onesie that he was in, because it’s connected to his onesie,” she admitted.
She continued: “So my instinct was just to take the fluff off, but then realizing that it was still attached to him. I had a closer look and realized it was wrapped around his toe, it wasn’t just a bit of fluff.”
After getting emotional, her mom calmed her down and simply said they’d get some scissors and cut it off at home. But that didn’t work, so they packed their bags for the hospital, arriving about 9:00 p.m.
Quinn said she waited for hours to be seen, only to be told they’d need to be transferred to another hospital. At 12:00 p.m. the next day, she said Harvey was finally seen by a surgeon. But Quinn claimed they said they couldn’t see a hair.
After getting a second opinion, another doctor using “a pair of scissors and tweezers” finally managed to extract the rogue hair.
Quinn explained why the surgeon couldn’t see the strand, saying: “The surgeon cut it open, looked in, dug it out, and pulled out this matted bit of hair, chunk, that was just wrapped around his toe.
“The hair was so fine from his jumpsuit that it had cut his skin, cut into it and the skin had healed over. So they’re saying they couldn’t see a hair, because the skin was healed over the wound.”
But the ordeal didn’t end there, as the professionals explained they would need to sedate Harvey for surgery, to check all the hair had been removed.
Quoting the doctor, Quinn said: “We’re going to cut open his toe, I want to make sure everything is out because if there is slightly any bit of hair left in his toe and we don’t know about it, that can cut through the tissue and his foot can go purple at night, and that means amputation, and he can lose his toe.”
Luckily it was a success and she confirmed he’s back to his happy self, saying: “They glued his toe back together, it’s a tiny little scar, it’s barely anything. But his toe now looks absolutely amazing. They did do a good job, and he’s perfectly fine. And the recovery was great, it didn’t get infected or anything.”
The mom admitted she felt guilty for missing it, but says nurses assured her it’s “common” and “happens all the time” to parents.
“He showed me no signs of being in pain, so I didn’t think to check all these tiny things. But it was in the tiny crease of his baby toe that this was there. And I never looked at it,” she added.
There’s been an outpouring of support and praise for Quinn, as people thanked her for spreading the word.
J’Kayla wrote: “Just please remember these things can happen so quickly and in no way a reflection of your parenting, you’re an amazing mumma!”
Lauren Ktomi commented: “So common yet not everyone knows! Well done for sharing awareness. Can be so scary.”
“I’m so glad you caught it early! Many times people don’t catch it until it’s too late and amputation is the only option,” Jasmin added.
And sharing a tip for the future, AinsleyShay2 claimed: “A tiny bit of hair removal cream (sensitive can remove this without having to cut the hair and potentially baby’s skin.”
Newsweek reached out to Quinn for comment.