Photo: Deborah Copaken Kogan
When Deborah Copaken Kogan’s son Leo came down with a sickness, she posted pictures of him to Facebook to keep her friends updated on her life. Her doctor told her it was probably just strep, which is easily treated. But two friends alerted her that it was probably Kawasaki disease, a rare and potentially fatal disease that had to be urgently treated. She tells the terrifying story in Slate.One friend was an acquaintance whose child had had the same disease, and another friend was a pediatrist.
While the disease looked like benign, a friend told her she needed to take Leo to the hospital right away. After tests for strep came back negative, she rushed her son to the hospital where he was treated in the nick of time.
The story is scary for any parent, but it has a happy ending. It shows that, for all that people dismiss social media and social networking as fluff, they really are powerful tools that make a meaningful, significant difference to people’s lives every day.