Former Panther Kurt Coleman says team at Hemby saved his daughter’s life

Kurt and Laura have four beautiful children. Khloe is their youngest.
Khloe Coleman
Khloe Coleman(Coleman family)
Published: Sep. 4, 2023 at 3:48 PM EDT
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CHARLOTTE, N.C. (WBTV) - Please meet the newest one of our amazing #MollysKids, Khloe Coleman.

Khloe’s parents are Kurt and Laura Coleman, in Charlotte. I say with transparency, this couple is remarkable, and I feel lucky to call them friends. They give back often. Kurt is also a former Carolina Panthers player, and this season the color commentator calling Panthers games in the radio booth. He and I have also co-emceed Dancing With The Stars of Charlotte together the last few years.

Kurt and Laura have four beautiful children. Khloe is their youngest.

In early 2022, Khloe had an unexpected medical emergency that sent their family spinning. They’re sharing her story now because:

A] She is OK. The lessons, they say, are easier to share.

B] Both Kurt and Laura say they’re grateful for how Novant Health Hemby Children’s Hospital’s ER Department helped during this dramatic moment of life.

It started when Khloe had a 104+ fever that lasted more than 12-hours. Laura took her to the pediatrician. The doctor was concerned, and ordered bloodwork. Laura then took her to a LabCorp facility, who tried to unsuccessfully draw blood.

”I called the pediatrician who suggested going to Hemby’s ER,” Laura said. “We arrived and it was obvious Khloe needed her blood drawn. The staff was incredible and a PICU nurse was able to quickly, successfully, draw Khloe’s blood. We were sent back home.”

A few hours later, blood results were back. Laura got a call she should immediately drive Khloe back to the hospital ER.

”Upon arrival, we were brought back in minutes,” Laura said. “By that point, Khloe still had a fever of 104, but her lips were also rosy red, she was lethargic, and there was a rash developing on her body. The department confirmed it was worried it could be Kawasaki’s disease. They began an IV bag for fluid. Several other doctors came in. They were running more tests as well and all believed it was Kawasaki’s based on symptoms. They admitted us into Hemby’s, where we ended up staying for 8 days.”

What is Kawasaki disease, you ask? You’re not alone in not knowing. I’d never heard of it until Kurt and Laura talked about it publicly. This is a disease that causes swelling in the walls of the body’s blood vessel. It commonly leads to the inflammation of the arteries that feed the heart.

The Coleman’s say since the ER department was so quick in diagnosing Khloe as having Kawaski’s, she was able to start IVIG treatment half-a-day early.

”Even with these treatments, the fever was persistent,” Laura said. “And, our girl gained 8 pounds of weight in fluids simply because her body was going crazy with everything going on. She wasn’t eating but was gaining weight. All of it was really, really scary.”

After the first round of IVIG not being successful, doctors did another round. This one was better.

”Our sweet girl was slowly herself again,” Laura said. “She was released to come home a few days later.”

Since then, the Coleman’s have realized that if Kawasaki’s isn’t caught soon enough, there can be lifelong effects on the heart. Throughout their stay, they say the cardiology department was monitoring Khloe for that reason.

”So much stands out to us,” they said. “The hospital had a swift willingness to bring us upstairs to have her blood drawn, and then to diagnose her. And, they took care of her—and us as nervous parents!—and treated her like she was their own. We are forever grateful.”

A picture of the Coleman’s and Khloe below with Cortney Cortes, the Director of Nursing for Emergency Services.

The Colemans and Khloe with Cortney Cortes, the Director of Nursing for Emergency Services at...
The Colemans and Khloe with Cortney Cortes, the Director of Nursing for Emergency Services at Novant Health's Hemby Children's Hospital.(Coleman family)

Khloe is an example of how things happen fast, the importance of conscientious adults around you, and appreciating swift medical care.

Always, advocate for your kids. Keep pushing when needed.

The Good, the Bad, and the Always Real.