Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Sick Days

Braden has spent most of his life being fearful of going to the doctor. Luckily for us he has been healthy and hasn't had any issues other than the occasional cold or strep throat. About a month ago he ran a low grade fever and had stomach pain and was extremely tired. In one week we made two visits to the pediatrician, two visits to the outpatient center at Newton Medical for blood work and a visit to CHOA we still aren't quite sure why he was running a fever. He did have elevated CRP levels and white blood cell counts, so we know there was infection somewhere. A few days later we received the last set of blood work that was taken and it showed that he tested positive for Epstein bar with the mono virus, but it wasn't live and the antibodies showed it in his system 2-4 months ago. Bizarre.

For the last two weeks he has felt really good. Still sleeping a little more than normal, but really seeming much more like himself. Saturday morning after breakfast he complained that his back tooth was hurting. I thought maybe he had a piece of food stuck and I flossed it to see if it would feel better. As the day went on he complained every few hours, so I just gave him Tylenol and he was fine. By the evening he said it hurt to eat, so I gave him more Tylenol and orajel and made plans to visit our dentist on Monday. We put him to bed around 8:30 and I heard him wake up crying at 11:30. I knew he was in a lot of pain if it woke him up because he sleeps through everything. I gave him orajel, but had to wait to give him Tylenol. He was finally able to get comfortable around 1:30 am, so I headed to try to get some sleep. I kept waking up listening for him, but didn't hear anything. Around 3:30 am I went into to check on him and my poor baby was crying silently in his bed because he said he didn't want to wake anyone up. His jaw had a little swelling and he was in a lot of pain. I got him dressed and went to change and we headed to CHOA.

When we arrived they got us back pretty quickly. They looked at his mouth and couldn't be certain which tooth it was. They thought it could be an abscess, but couldn't tell without bothering the teeth. They gave him loritab for the pain and sent us home with a prescription of amoxicillin and instruction sot come back if the swelling started turning red on his cheek. By the time I got him home around 7:30 am he had started vomiting from the pain and his swelling got worse. He vomited several times an hour and was in so much pain. By that evening the swelling in his cheek looked like several off balls were stuck in the side and it started turning red. He wasnt able to hold his antibiotic or pain meds down so we decided I should take him back.

My mom went with me and I was thankful for that. He threw up a few times on the way and when we got into the waiting room. They took us straight back and the same doctors and nurses that we had seen that morning were back for night shift. They couldn't believe how bad he looked. They put numbing cream on him and sent someone in to talk to him about starting an IV. He was nervous about it hurting, but while they were putting in the IV, she let him play a game on her iPad which distracted him. After the IV was inserted they started him on morphine for the pain and fluids since he was dehydrated from all of the vomiting. He was dehydrated that when they told him they were going to give him fluids, he kept saying yes, please give them to me in my mouth, my mouth is so thirsty. He was pitiful. He had a CT scan of his face so they could figure out if he needed surgery. We knew we would be staying either way since the swelling had turned to cellulitis and he needed strong antibiotics administer intravenously until it cleared up.

We finally got into our room around 2 am and then an oral sure on came in around 3 am to have me sign a consent form in case they decided to do surgery. We finally fell asleep around 3 am and another oral surgeon came in at 6 am to let me know that he would be having surgery. They were concerned that the abscess wouldn't clear up on the antibiotics. I called Brad to let him know and my brother took Parker and Emersyn so that my dad and Brad could come to the hospital. Braden finally got some rest and slept until almost 10. When he woke up he wanted something to drink and I had to tell him he couldn't have anything because he had to have surgery. He was so scared and it broke my heart. They sent a life coach in to talk to him and she showed him everything they were going to do to him and he got to do the same thing on a bear she gave him. She also gave him a new box of Lego's which made him pretty happy. We also to to walk to the hospital library and check out a movie to watch before his surgery. He was excited when his friends Ethan and Emma came to see him also.

Around 1:30 they came to take him back for surgery and the medication they gave to relax him had the opposite effect (they said it happens to some people). It made him so agitated and as they wheeled him back he was crying and screaming for us to help him. It broke our hearts. Around 2:30 we heard from the nurse that the surgery went well and the surgeon came to see us not long after that. They removed his tooth and the pretty large abscess and inserted a drain for the blood and puss. They brought him back to the room after he woke up and the swelling had already started to go down! He slept for a while and then woke up and was ready to eat and play. We walked him down to playroom on our wing and we colored pictures and then took him for a tour of the hospital and outside in a wheelchair since he was a fall risk due to his pain meds. He ws really mad about the wheelchair and told the doctor that his "mom nagged him to ride in the wheelchair even though his feet worked just fine!". The pain meds had him saying all sorts of funny things! He slept off and on through the evening and watched movies on his kindle until bedtime.

We woke up early the next morning and they removed the drain and told us that we could go home sometime later that day. My dad brought Parker and Emersyn to see Braden and the three of them were so happy to be together. Braden wanted to show P and E the playroom, so we spent a little bit of time there. My parents took Emy and left around 10:30. Parker stayed with Braden and me and they were so happy to be together. They snuggled and watched movies for a while...until Parker discovered he could call the nurses' station from the bathroom and move Braden's bed up and down and try to sneak out while I was talking to the nurse. Oh Parker! Braden got two more doses of the antibiotic intravenously and then we were finally able to leave around 1:30! We were so happy to be heading home and CHOA made a really scary experience much more bearable. They are an amazing hospital and I think Braden actually likes going to see the doctor now!