The parents and doctors treating a 7-month-old are still baffled as to what came out of the infant's cheek that they originally thought they were treating for just an infection. It was a feather.
This Dec. 11, 2012 photo shows an approximately two-inch feather was pulled from the neck Mya Whittington in Hutchinson, Kan. (Photo: AP/The Hutchinson News, Travis Morisse)
Mya Whittington was taken to the Hutchinson Regional Medical Center in Kansas over the weekend where doctors administered an antibiotic to the area that had grown to more than the size of a golf ball.
The baby's parents thought it could have been a swollen gland. Physicians thought perhaps a staff infection on her lymph nodes.
The marked area on the neck of Whittington shows the size of the original swollen infected area that was caused by a feather that she is thought to have ingested from a feather pillow. (Photo: AP/The Hutchinson News, Travis Morisse)
According to an AP report (via Fox News), Mya's grandmother took her back to the hospital when a "pimple" formed on the swollen area.
"She looked like Quasimodo," father Aaron Whittington said.
At the hospital again, doctors broke the "pimple" in attempt to drain it and marked Mya's face to monitor the swelling. A scab formed over the area and was scraped off. It was at this point that Aaron noticed something protruding from the wound. The object was pulled and out came the 2-inch long feather.
Here's the feather poking out of Mya's cheek. (Image: KWCH video screenshot)
Mya's parents and hospital staff are still dumbfounded about the discovery.
"I was just like, they pulled a feather out of my child," Aaron said, according to follow-up report by KWCH. "How crazy is that?"
The Whittingtons have a feather pillow (or had since they've now decided to throw it out), which they speculate could have been the source of the feather. Still, how did it get to be in the baby's cheek? Doctors speculate that Mya put it in her mouth where it might have pierced her cheek or throat.
(Image: KWCH video screenshot)
"The body being crazy as it is just started to reject it and forced it out," Aaron said to KWCH.
Watch the report:
As the KWCH's report pointed out, the feather, which doctors said was in her face for months, was part of Mya's body for a significant portion of her life. Her mother said she had suspected something was wrong for a time, as Mya would frequently pull that cheek away, but it didn't physically manifest itself until recently.
The baby is home now, but according to AP there is 4-centimeters of swollen tissue that has formed a hard mass. If it doesn't break up naturally, it will need to be removed surgically.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.