The duct tape challenge has left a 14-year old half blind, and doctors are reserved regarding the chances of him ever getting his vision back again.
Skylar Fish was severely injured on Saturday, January 16, as he was trying to complete the duct tape challenge alongside a couple of his friends. The game, which has turned into an Internet craze in the last few years, involves several participants: one is usually seated, as the others envelop him or her in duct tape.
The trapped individual then tries to escape in the following 3 minutes, while the efforts are being captured on camera; if the endeavor turns out to be successful, then the challenge can be considered complete.
In Skylar’s case, his pals wrapped him in duct tape as he was still standing, and as the young struggled to break loose, he tumbled to the ground, his head crashing against a window frame.
The teenager’s friends quickly alerted 911 dispatchers about the incident, and an ambulance was sent out to the school where the boys had been enacting the duct tape challenge.
Skylar’s mom Sarah was finally told about everything that had happened as her 14-year old son was being transported to a Seattle Children’ Hospital, and immediately rushed to his side.
Apparently, the boy suffered a brain aneurysm during the fall, and also smashed his left eye socket and cheekbone. At first it was unclear if Skylar would ever recover from his injuries, but after the brain surgery, the teenager’s condition eventually stabilized.
He did require 48 surgical staples for his head wound, but he’s still lucky to have made it out alive, considering how critical his state had appeared at first.
The prevailing problem is that Skylar can no longer see with his left eye, and it doesn’t seem likely that his sight will ever be restored. Another aspect that worries Dr. McNalley, who’s been assisting the boy’s rehabilitation, is the fact that Skylar’s brain damage may lead to cognitive impairment as the years go by.
Even so, the teenager’s family is trying to stay optimistic, especially considering that the outcome could’ve been much worse.
If his brain damage had been extensive, the boy could’ve entered vegetative state, or could’ve succumbed to his injuries, but at least now he has a new lease on life, and will hopefully be more cautious before giving in to peer pressure or to the latest viral challenges.
It’s well worth mentioning that at first Sarah Fish couldn’t help feeling slightly ashamed that her son had been hurt while playing such a pointless, dangerous game, and didn’t want any of her acquaintances to ever know about it.
However, upon considering things more carefully, she came to the conclusion that Skylar’s story should be shared after all, because it could help deter others from engaging in the duct tape challenge.
As she pointed out, kids at Skylar’s age tend to be highly impressionable, and at the moment social media is strewn with viral games, which might seem fun but are actually more reckless and dangerous than they appear.
For instance, the cinnamon challenge, which involves ingesting a spoon filled with cinnamon in less than a minute without drinking any beverages can be extremely hazardous.
That’s because the ground spice makes the mouth and the throat excessively dry, leading to coughing fits, vomiting, gagging, lung scarring, impaired breathing and throat irritation. Some may even develop pneumonia after trying this stunt, or require emergency hospitalization as their lungs collapse.
Therefore, as Sarah Fish explained, it’s obvious that teenagers should be more wary about the dangers of Internet fads, because efforts to appear cool or fearless in front of friends or peers might even prove deadly.
Meawhile, Skylar has also commented on the incident, revealing that he has suffered memory loss following his brain injury and currently has no recollections of having taken part in the duct tape challenge.
He does recall that he wanted to try it because it seemed cool at the time, but now he wishes he had never given in to that impulse.
Image Source: WIAT