14-year-old battles brain infection after sinus infection spreads

- While most kids are raiding their Halloween stash and doing homework tonight, one Katy teen is feeling fortunate to be alive after his nasal congestion turned into a near death experience.

14-year-old Jeremiah Minor's simple sinus infection developed into a serious brain infection.  He spent all of October and a portion of September at Texas Children's Hospital as doctors fought to keep him alive.  Photos of him in the hospital show his head enlarged and his eyes swollen shut.  Loved ones weren't sure if Jeremiah would live or die.

“We have a prayer wall at my daycare and I noticed when I went to work one day somebody had written his name on there,” said Jeremiah’s mom Stacy Minor. 

In fact, Mrs. Minor says there was a prayer chain for her son that stretched from the U.S. to Africa to Egypt.  People from all over the world were responding to her social media post about her son’s battle with a brain infection.

“I just kept praying, praying for God to heal my body,” said 14-year-old Jeremiah.  The teen began complaining of headaches shortly after the school year started. 

“The pain was so bad I can’t really explain.  It felt like somebody was pushing onto my eye.  It was like a lot of pressure," said Jeremiah. His parents thought his eyes just needed to adjust to his new computer class. 

Then one afternoon in school, it became too much.  “I had to call my mom or text her and just say I can't take it.  I need to go to the doctor," Jeremiah said.

It turned out the 14-year-old had a sinus infection and the infection spread to his brain.  He was rushed into surgery, having six procedures in eight days.

“I mean the infection was so bad the neurosurgeon described it as something he has never seen before,” says Mrs. Minor.

She was overcome with ‘what ifs’ because it was nearly a month after her son first complained of headaches before he was diagnosed at Texas Children’s Hospital. 

“Maybe if when he told me he first had the headaches maybe I could have been proactive.  Maybe I could have spared him a little of this pain but it’s by the grace of God they found the infection.  They scanned his brain after I told them my mom and two other relatives died of a brain tumor.  That’s when they found the infection had spread to his brain.  At first they thought it was just a bad sinus infection,” explains Mrs. Minor.

The 14-year-old was released from the hospital on Halloween after a 40-day stay.  Now he's back at home caring for his pet lizards and could be back in school in a couple weeks.

“I just want to encourage parents to listen to your children and keep them covered by prayer,” says Mrs. Minor.

Jeremiah still has quite a bit of recovery ahead of him.  He has a blood clot behind his left eye and now needs his gallbladder removed. 

There is a fundraiser Saturday, November 12th from 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. to help his parents pay the mounting medical bills.  The BBQ and 5K Fun Run Fundraiser will be held at Lakes of Bridgewater Community Park at 3715 Bownoor Lane in Katy, TX 77449.  There will be a bounce house, face painting, live DJ and BBQ plates, to name a few things you can expect.

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