Bed bugs behind Monkeypox false alarm

April 27, 2012 3:29:20 PM PDT
The woman at the center of the medical scare on a plane at Midway Airport is talking about the experience.

The rash on Lise Sievers arm turned out to be a case of bed bugs and she is recovering in LaPorte, Ind. The red dots on her arms are now gone, but the condition triggered her Delta flight to be quarantined at Midway Airport Thursday.

The plane couldn't pull up to the gate and when an announcement was made that one of the passengers may have a contagious disease.

CLICK HERE to learn more about Monkeypox from the CDC.

"I thought, 'It's me,'" Sievers said. "'I think they might want me.'"

First responders boarded the plane and made their way to Sievers. She showed them the red, itchy dots on her body. They took pictures to send to local and federal health experts.

"I saw that my thighs, just past my knees were covered, covered, hundreds of them," she said.

Sievers said she was in Uganda on a mission to adopt two children. She said one of the children came down with a pox-like illness, and one of the pox busted on her.

"When I saw how these red dots were everywhere. I was like, 'I got something,'" she said.

She boarded this flight, but before doing so, she called her mother and sister ahead of time and they notified an Indiana hospital about her condition so she could get medical attention when she arrived.

"The hospital, the LaPorte Hospital, contacted the CDC, the CDC contacted Delta and quarantined the plane," Sievers said. "Even then, I didn't know it was me."

In the end, however, those red bumps were not monkey pox at all, just scabes.

Scabes is a mite that burrows into the skin and lays eggs. Sievers said her case is almost gone after applying medicated cream.

Sievers says she's actually grateful this happened because she has a pre-existing blood condition that was out of control.

Her trip to the hospital yesterday brought that to light.

Sievers expects to return to Uganda next month to pick up the two children.


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