Sunday, September 2, 2007

Of Ear Infections and ERs

What a weekend.  Well, what a week actually.  About a week and a half ago, Jake had his 9m well baby visit.  All good.  20# and short.  No ear problems, clear for take-off.  The next day we get on a plane and head for Boston (Jake's first plane ride, and another whole story as far as the weekend details go).  By the time we get back, we're exhausted, and Jake has a cold.  It's hard to say if it was just a matter of course, or something he picked up by chewing a toy in the doctors office, or in recycled airplane air, or what.

So, about the middle of last week, Jake started having a fever.  It started at 103, and Tylenol could get it to about 101.  When doubled up with Motrin, he finally seemed to be getting some relief.  But the nights were still awful.  He wasn't sleeping, and I wasn't sleeping.  So I took him to the doctor on Friday morning, and sure enough, the cold has decided to take up residence in his ears.  He was given Amoxycillin (sp?), which I figured would be fine.  He'd had it once before and didn't have problems.  However, Nicole, Rob and I are all allergic.  I should never have let the stuff even come into the house.

Here's where the ER comes in.  Friday evening, as I was giving Jake his second dose of the day, I got a drip on my leg, which I wiped off with my finger.  I then go to wipe Jake's face, in that Mom kind of way where you lick the tip of your fingers, and wipe the kids face.  BAD MOVE.  I could taste the medicine, but didn't really think anything of it since we're only talking about some residue - nothing more.  I was still rocking him to sleep when I noticed that my palms were itching.  By the time I put him down, my rings hurt, and my lips and tongue were tingly.  I went downstairs to tell Rob I needed some Benedryl, but I quickly changed my mind, because I could see the rash on my hands spreading up my arm. 

Fortunately, there is a brand new hospital about 5 minutes from the house.  So, I drove myself so that the kids could stay in bed.  I got in immediately, and they took only enough info to get me a bracelet.  Within probably about 5 minutes, I had an IV and was receiving Benedryl and steroids.  Let me just take this opportunity to say that IV Benedryl SUCKS!  It felt like fire rushing through my veins, and at any point I could have pointed out how far through my body it had traveled.  But I couldn't, because it felt like it was coming up my throat and I started to gag and choke.  The doctors just stared while I pounded my chest trying to convince them that I was choking.  But apparently, this is completely normal.  Then, I felt just wrong.  I wasn't sure whether I was going to faint, or float to the ceiling.

Once that feeling started to subside, the shakes set in.  That went on for about an hour.  Then, when everything was getting back to normal and the rash was clearly regressing, they came in and did my registration and gave me my discharge papers.

Over the last two days, Jake's cold has gotten progressively worse.  The poor boy can't breathe through his nose at all, even though it's been running non-stop, soaking bib after bib.  And, as for me, I'm still not right.  I don't know if it's leftover swelling, or some drug side-effect, or what.  But my chest has been heavy ever since.  I can breathe, but sometimes it just hurts.  I've got 4 more days of steroids to take, and an epi-pen to carry with me in case things flare up again (or I get too close to the medicine again), and I can't get to a hospital.

I think maybe even Jake needs to not have penicillin again.  I think maybe it needs to never come into our house again - ever.


Tiffany said...

How scary for you! Glad your ok!

Laura McIntyre said...

How scary, i hope you guys are all feeling better now