6-year-old Florida boy dies of rabies contracted from a bat

ORLANDO, Fla. (AP/WSVN) — A 6-year-old Florida boy has died from rabies he contracted after being scratched by an infected bat.

The father of Ryker Roque, Henry Roque, told NBC that the boy died Sunday at an Orlando hospital.

Roque said he had found a sick bat, put it in a bucket and told his son not to touch it, but he did and was scratched.

He said he washed the wound thoroughly but didn’t take the boy to the hospital because he cried when he was told he would get shots.

About a week later the boy developed numb fingers and a headache and his parents took him for hospital treatment.

Rabies is almost always fatal once symptoms develop. A vaccine given after a wound but before symptoms almost always prevents the disease.

According to Fox 10, the parents opted to place Ryker into a medically-induced coma as part of an experimental treatment on those infected with rabies. However, the treatment could not save him.

Ryker’s family has set up a GoFundMe page to help pay for medical expenses.

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