Sunday, December 9, 2012

First ER Scare.

I have to say, I think we've done pretty well about not freaking out and rushing him to the ER at the drop of a hat.  But really, Ryan gets all the credit because he's been so amazingly strong, so we really haven't had a reason to freak out.  This week was a little different because Dani got sick, so we had an extra watchful eye on him because, well, it's pretty impossible to quarantine a sick two year old.  And my poor girl is really sick.  I'm REALLY hoping the antibiotics she started Friday night are going to kick in tonight.  It's so hard to sit across from her at the dinner table with her sad, red, watery eyes and her runny nose.  She so rarely gets sick, it just breaks my hear to see her this way.  She's been spending lots of the day with grandma to keep her germs out of the house, and then we cuddle and watch movies on the couch before bedtime.  I will miss all the extra cuddles, but I can't wait for her to be her old, happy self again.

So, back to the ER scare.  In this paragraph I will attempt to justify the lack of sleep and $100 ER copay we dealt with overnight.  Last night when Dave and I got home from our date night, Dani was asleep and Ryan was in the mama-roo (side note:  this thing ROCKS, well, literally.  But figuratively, too.  Huge thanks to my sorority sister Elisa for lending it to us.  Ryan loves it!).  We got Ryan bathed and dressed for bed, and I noticed that the top of his head looked like the soft spot was bulging just a tiny bit.  Dani's was always concave, and Ryan's has always just been pretty flat, but when I gently rubbed my hand across his head you could feel just a tiny bit of puffiness there.  So, of course, I went straight to google.  That search engine is such a blessing, but such a curse.  I want to say to new moms, especially moms of preemies, "Don't let your typing finger lead you anywhere near that place if you are worried about your baby."  But, I can't...because then I'd be a big, fat hypocrite.  So, moms, continue to use google like we all know we must, but please be careful with the information out there and when you read something awful, REMAIN CALM.  :::Making a mental note to take my own advice:::  Anyways, I don't know if you're like me, but when I search for something on google, I'm always so hopeful that it will just give me some sort of reassurance.  Like 4 out of the 5 sites I read will say, yeah, that's pretty normal, don't worry about it.  Well, when I googled bulging frontal soft spot, it was not reassuring as I hoped it would be.  It was more of the, "If it's concave, you're probably fine and your baby is probably dehydrated.  If it's bulging, that's serious.  Call the doctor.  It's probably an infection, meningitis, hydrocephalus, AHHHHHH."  Maybe not exactly like that, but of course that's how I read it.  (I hadn't made my mental note yet, you see).  But wait, it gets worse.  Just as I was reading all the scary things it could possible be, Ryan starts screaming.  And let me tell you, the boy hardly ever cries, so when he does, you run.  So I ran back there, and in the 2 seconds it took me to get there he was already calming down, so it was probably just a gas bubble, but of course my google-infested mind looked right past the obvious.  I felt him to check for fever (because I've been checking him for it all day since Dani has one), and he felt cold and clammy.  I remember in the NICU they told me that sometimes with preemies a fever can present itself with a lower than normal temp instead of a high temp.  So I took his temperature and it was 96.8.  So now we're at the full fledged, something is definitely not right stage, so I call the pediatrician on call and explain the situation.  And of course, she says he needs to be seen at the ER. So, Dave had to take him in at around 11pm because I needed to stay with sicky Dani who would be beside herself if she woke up in the middle of the night (as she did 3 more times while he was at CHOC) and found out that mommy wasn't there.  So Dave really stepped up and took charge with Ryan and off they went to CHOC.

So you see, we weren't THAT crazy to take him in because there were some little symptoms there, and the pediatrician told us to.  I even called the small baby unit at CHOC to see if any of Ryan's old primary nurses were working, and I got to talk to Natalie who promised she would go visit him if he ended up getting admitted.  Well, when they got there, Ryan's temperature was still low (97.0) so they put him under a warmer and gave him some blankets.  Then the ran a bunch of tests to make sure it wasn't any sort of infection.  Praise God, every single one of those tests came back clean.  They did a chest x-ray and said his lungs looked clear.  They tested for RSV and said he didn't have it.  Then I get a call from Dave at 4am saying they are going to keep him overnight.  What the what?!  I couldn't understand.  He said it was something about him having the low temp plus they saw slightly elevated white blood cell levels.  So, I asked him to let me talk to the doctor who just happened to walk in the room.  I asked if the elevated levels could've been because of the RSV antibody shot they just gave him on the 4th, and did we really need to keep him there overnight if he wasn't showing signs of being actually sick, etc. and he agreed that we could bring him home and just keep an eye on him here.  That was definitely an answer to a prayer.

Oh, and as for the soft spot bulging, they didn't even think it was a big deal.  They said if it was something concerning, there would be other symptoms and you would know.  Well, actually doctor, YOU would know.  I would not.  That's why I read google.

So, the best part of this whole thing?  We knew the day would come when we would have to take him into the ER, and we knew there was always a chance of him getting readmitted, but we survived this first scare.  Ryan passed this little test with flying colors.  And the part that actually made me chuckle was the discharge paperwork that said on the front:  Patient was treated for - Hypothermia.  Yup, we are officially those parents who took their kid to the ER because he was a little cold, and all we had to do was give him an extra blankey.  Embarrassing.  But we are so, so thankful that it turned out this way.  Now we just need to keep praying that Dani gets better and we all continue to keep this nasty bug at bay.

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Anonymous said...

So glad everything is ok Jen. What a scare! Love you xoxo...Bevy

Johanna said...

Ohmygoodness, scary few hours! Glad he is just fine! If it makes you feel any better, we rushed our little guy into the ped's office because he was pulling on his ear (absolutely no other symptoms whatsoever). Turns out he had discovered his ear and was enjoying playing with it :) At least you had a few symptoms to go off of and the recommendation of the on call dr!