Tuesday, February 11, 2014

In Which We Don't Have A Particularly Fun Time

So Thursday Connor had a couple of seizures, threw up something that looked nothing like Pediasure and I pulled about 65 ml of what bore a strong resemblance to dark chocolate mixed with coffee grounds out of his g-tube.  This, for those of you who are not medically inclined, was an indication that the little guy might have had a major gastric bleed, which falls in the category of Things You Never Want To Have Happen To Your Kid Ever.  My threshold for panic over possible emergencies is pretty ridiculously high at this point, but I have to admit that after I saw the contents of the syringe I came the closest to freaking out that I have in a long, long time.

So after a phone call to the doctor's office, where the triage nurse told me that we needed to be at the hospital now, I packed up Connor, made arrangements for Eden to stay with my parents, and headed down to the emergency room.  The receptionist at the check-in and the nurse who did Connor's vitals both recognized us, because my child is a frequent flier down there.  While it gets us really good service, this is not the kind of thing I'm particularly thrilled to be able to say.

Anyway, the emergency room was apparently the cool place to hang out on a Thursday evening, because there were probably over 100 people in the waiting room.  The hospital was so crowded that they were turning away all ambulances that didn't have someone with an airway issue or who was actively coding inside.  Since the little guy, though lethargic and crabby, didn't seem to be dying at that particular moment, we settled down for what was probably going to be a long wait.

Connor doesn't like waiting.  Also he has an impeccable sense of dramatic timing.

So about fifteen minutes after his vital signs were taken, the little guy had a seizure.  I pulled him out of his chair, turned him sideways on my lap, and flagged down a passing nurse for what I thought was going to be helping me time.  She took one look at my kid, who was at that moment turning a particularly lovely shade of blue, told me to follow her and booked it through the doors.

Despite my protests that seizures with cyanosis were fairly commonplace in our house and not why we were here, they kicked some poor guy out of his room into the hallway, slammed clean sheets on the bed and told me to put Connor down.  Of course, his seizure ended just as they got the oxygen ready, and then he took a nice little nap in his new comfy digs.  That's one way to jump the line, I suppose.

So then shortly thereafter we saw the doctor, who tested the residual I'd brought in and discovered that, despite his agreement that it looked exactly like what you would expect with a gastric hemorrhage, it was not in fact blood.  So that was a very, very good thing.  However, Connor proceeded to have two more seizures in the emergency room, so they wouldn't let us go home either.  They gave him a hefty dose of Ativan after the last one, which made for a very sleepy kid.

I pointed out that Connor's seizure threshold lowered any time he got sick at all and it probably just meant he was coming down with something, that we wouldn't have brought him in for seizures and the reason we'd brought him in was resolved, and that any additional time we spent in the hospital meant adding to the risk of the little guy picking up some other nasty bug, but the doctor still decided he wanted us in overnight for observation and that the best thing would be for us to transfer up to Children's in Seattle.  I can understand his viewpoint, though I wasn't really excited about the decision.  Better safe than sorry, I suppose.  So off we went.

The ride there was probably the most dangerous part of the evening.  The roads were covered in ice and it was actively snowing along the first nine miles or so of the trip, and since Jer's gone I had to drive the wheelchair van up instead of riding in the ambulance with Connor like I usually do.  Wheelchair vans are not exactly built to drive well on icy roads, and I had a few harrowing moments where I could feel the back end start to fishtail despite traffic driving at about fifteen miles an hour.  Thankfully the weather cleared up a few miles north and it was smooth sailing after that, but I passed enough wrecks in the first part of the drive to make me very glad the roads would probably be clear by the time we came home.

So after I met the ambulance at Children's and Connor was checked in to the emergency department there, I repeated my reasoning for why we didn't need to be there to their attending physician. Thankfully I was able to convince her with the same arguments, and after a few hours, various clear diagnostic test results and a loading dose of Keppra to keep Connor from having more seizures while he worked through whatever bug he was likely coming down with, we were allowed to go home.  We finally got back at around 5:30 in the morning.

Connor spent the next few days getting over what was probably a fairly mild GI bug, and is now back to school and his usual business of being a super laid-back, happy little guy.  I'm finally caught up on sleep, and have also gotten back into my usual routine.  So all's well that ends well.

I'm hoping that's the last bit of excitement we'll have around here for a while!



A-C said...

Just an anonymous reader here, but I must say I was getting a bit worried after several days without an update. Glad to hear the little guy is OK!

Emthe said...

I white knuckled just reading this. Glad you guys are okay.

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