Wayzata High School senior back home after 10 days in hospital from COVID-19 complications

A Wayzata High School student is back home after a 10-day stay in the hospital due to severe complications from COVID-19.

Seventeen-year-old Ella Winston is a very healthy high school senior, a dancer since she was 3 and now a captain of the Wayzata High School dance team. But when she came in contact with COVID-19, worry arose quickly.

Her temperature spiked to more than 104 degrees, and she developed an immensely sore throat with a cough, along with vomiting and dehydration.

"There were a few times when she was violently throwing up, gagging on this mucus and she said to me, "Mama, I just can’t do it anymore," her mom, Sarah Winston, recalled.

Two days after getting sick, Ella was admitted to Children’s Hospital in Minneapolis, and within a day she was rushed to the intensive care unit where she would remain for nearly a week.

"She was dealing with really quite a few things that were attacking her body and really shutting down her body," Sarah Winston said.

Ella’s kidneys were shutting down, she developed a urinary tract infection and a bacterial infection.

Doctors say she now has myocarditis, or inflammation of the heart, which has put a stop to anything that will raise her heart rate, like dancing.

"She was having heart failure, that was very scary because then her respiration rate dropped," Sarah Winston said.

As the mom and daughter left the hospital Tuesday night, 10 days after arriving, they had a candid conversation.

"I asked her, ‘Ella, were you afraid? Were you afraid of dying? And she said, ‘Yeah mama, I was,’ and I said, ‘So was I,’ I was literally scared to death," her mom shared.

A GoFundMe page has raised roughly $125,000 for medical bills in just three days.

"It feels great and it’s great to see the love that’s been offered to us," Sarah Winston said.

They hope Ella’s story is a reminder to wear a mask and stay home when sick, to not only protect the vulnerable but the healthy as well.

"That’s who we were protecting this whole time (the vulnerable population), little did I know it could affect my super healthy child," Sarah Winston said.