Monday, August 4, 2008

I'll take the Rotavirus with a small side of pneumonia.

By 1:00 this afternoon, Julian had seventeen poopy diapers in the last eighteen hours. They were watery and looked like the color of grass clippings. And he was screaming, wailing - and it was breaking my heart. I was a bit worried that the stool softener (apparently it wasn't actually a laxative) that I'd taken had caused him to be sick. But I didn't think it would make him that sick (as it turns out, that wasn't what was wrong). He was running a low grade fever, but nothing to write home about. His voice was hoarse, but I thought it was from crying so much over the last 24 hours. He was a bit raspy and wheezy but he seemed in fairly good spirits.

I called the pediatrician's office and described what his symptoms were. Their instructions - "Go directly to the emergency room." I called Patrick, lamenting those instructions, and said that I didn't think it was necessary, that he didn't seem that sick to me. I was pissed that we'd have to pay a $100 co-pay instead of the $20 for the doctor's office.

We spent seven hours at the hospital. He had two IVs, IV antibiotics, a chest x-ray and a full blood workup. His x-ray showed some potential pneumonia and some "left perihilar stranding densities representing atelectasis" whatever that means. His white blood cell count was too high, his red blood cell count too low, hemoglobin too low, platelets way too high, neurtrophils too low, lymphocytes shockingly high, glucose almost double what it should have been, creatinine too low, potassium and calcium too high. I have no idea what any of this means - except that elevated white blood cells indicate an infection of some kind. He's to follow up with the pediatrician's office tomorrow at 9:15. I've been directed to let him nurse as much as he possibly will and then top him off with pedialyte through the night. I took a sip of it before I put it in a bottle for him, and it tastes like liquid medicated ass. Blech. He actually seems to like it though.

While in the emergency room, we were sharing the room with a guy who'd gotten his nose broken (and heard him moaning and throwing up blood while his face was stitched up) and an elderly woman who was in for shingles and a potential heart attack. I'm praying to God he doesn't get chicken pox now (since shingles are the same virus). We were separated only by a flimsy cotton divider.

My nerves are wrecked, even though Patrick actually made it to the hospital before we did and stayed with me the entire time. I lost it and started bawling when they put a catheter in his tiny little penis and he let out the most blood curdling cry I've ever heard. I had to leave the room when they put the IV in because I almost passed out.

I felt so awful that I'd initially hesitated to take him to the hospital, as I really didn't think he was that sick. The rotavirus results will be back in two days, but the doctor said that's what her money would be on. They're doing some further analysis on the chest x-rays to get a better feel about whether he has pneumonia.

Oh, and in other news - I am not pregnant. Took a test last weekend, and all is well. I'm incredibly thankful, as that was something we didn't want right now.


orodemniades said...

The sound of your own baby's crying is, I believe, the worst sound in the world. And when you can't fix it...I'm so sorry you had to go through all of this. I hope Julian is feeling better - and that you two, do, too!

daysgoby said...

A - Every parent has had an 'I am SO STUPID' moment at the ER, I swear!

I took Cass in for a cut (glued together, no stitches) and while the doctor was waiting for the glue to dry she looked at R (sitting happily in my arms babbling to herself, no fever, good colour, not listless in the slightest) and said 'Hum. I'm going to get my stethoscope and just have a look at the girl.' R had coughed ONCE.

Turns out she had strep throat. A riotously bad case.

Don't beat yourself up over it.

Hope J is feeling better!

Scoutj said...

Oh no!!! I really hope he is okay April. How scary! Please update us on how he is tomorrow.

Big hugs to you three!!

Kris said...

yes, please keep us updated. Those ER visits suck. We had to do it for a vit k deficiency, and he had blood in his poo.

DD said...

I remember when XBoy had that at about 18 mos. They had to call in the trauma team to do the IV as his little veins were so shrunken. It sucks, to be sure, but hopefully he's now on the way to getting better.