Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Carter's Hospital Stay

About a month ago, Carter was admitted to MCG for two nights. It all started on Saturday afternoon. We noticed that Carter was complaining that his nose hurt, it looked a little raw, like he had blown it and it was just red and irritated. As the day went on, I thought it looked swollen. I immediately thought "staph infection". I read a blog post awhile back on Kelly's Korner (you can read the post here) and ever since then, I've been so paranoid about staph infections. After his bath on Saturday night, I was able to drain the puss filled bump in his nose (gross, I know) Greg thought it was just a zit or something. We decided to give it another day and see how it was.

This is what it looked like on Saturday.

When Carter woke up on Sunday, it was still swollen and luckily our pediatrician has weekend hours. So, we were able walk in at 12:00. Carter was acting completely fine, just one side of his face was swollen. We even took the boys to the park before going to the pediatrician and he played good. He even played a little too good with Evan in the waiting room (getting a little wild) so Greg took Evan home and we called him when we were done to pick us up. The doctor agreed that it was staph and didn't think it was the antibiotic resistant kind and gave us an antibiotic. She said it should start looking better as soon as he started taking the antibiotic. I gave him a dose right after the dr. appointment and a dose before bed.

Carter did not get better, he actually got worse. I called the on call doctor about it before he went to bed and the doctor said that he thought it was fine and to just wait. Before Greg and I went to bed, I went in to check on him and his face was even more swollen. Greg and I agreed that he needed to go to the ER immediately. Greg stayed home with Evan and I took Carter to a pediatric ER in Augusta.
I took these pictures in the exam room at the ER, I just could not "wait and see" this swelling scared me and I had to take him in. When he shut his mouth, his lips didn't even come together because his face was so swollen.
MCG is a teaching hospital, so I saw a couple of med students first. And let me just say, I have no idea who was a med student, who was an intern, and who was a resident. I knew who the attending was and everybody else I just refer to as "students" The first "student" came in and said he didn't think it looked that bad, that I probably didn't give the antibiotic enough time, and that they'd probably just release us to go home. Normally, I would think "oh no, did I freak out, am I overreacting, should I have brought him in?" but I KNEW something wasn't right, so I just nodded and waited on the attending. As soon as she walked in, before I even said anything, she said "this is very concerning, especially being on his face, we're admitting him" They gave him an IV so that they could run some IV antibiotics. You can see his pitiful IV and that the swelling is so bad that you can see it in his profile pic!

They admitted us and by the time we got to his room and were examined and checked in, it was almost 1:30. Carter was SO good the entire time. He let all the doctors (and students, nurses, etc) examine him, he did great for the IV and blood draw, etc. I wasn't sure how he'd do going to sleep, but it was so late, he ended up falling asleep fine. He was asleep in probably 10 minutes. There was a crib in the room but he said it was scary and he wanted to sleep on the bed, so I slept on the couch and he slept on the pull out part.

We ended up switching spots sometime in the night and he slept until 8:30 the next morning. He was so tired and looked so pitiful to me.

His little IV and swollen face, it all just broke my heart.

The next morning, my mom came over first thing to keep Evan so that Greg could come up and stay with Carter. I went home and took a quick shower and packed some toys and stuff to bring back. When they did their morning rounds, they decided to keep him another night. His face was still as swollen as it was when we got there. It wasn't worse, but it wasn't better, even after 2-3 rounds of IV antibiotics. They were assuming it was staph, but they didn't know exactly what it was, just that it was an infection. They didn't want it spreading because it was in his face, I don't know if they would have kept him another night if the infection was somewhere else. And because they didn't know what it was, he was on isolation precautions which means that he couldn't leave the room and the staff that came in had to put on a gown, gloves, et. Luckily, we had bought some stuff for the boys birthday and this happened about a week before, so we had a couple of toys we were able to give him in the room that entertained him the entire time.

During the day, he didn't think the crib was so scary, so he had me put him in there to play with his toys. He was so good the entire time we were there. It's a small room, he was away from home, away from Evan for the first time ever, and he didn't whine, fuss or cry about anything except when the doctor came in and tried to get a sample from his nose--which didn't work but hurt really bad. Carter was a mess after that, but it didn't last too long. My parents and sister were came to visit and I think them being there really helped him calm down faster than he would have if it were just me.

Greg brought Evan by to visit. It was so cute to see them reunited, and Evan brought Carter a snack and Carter couldn't wait to show off some of the new toys. But, it's a small room for 2 adults and 2 active toddlers. Evan had passed the kids play area on the way to Carter's room, so he was eager to go play. I took Evan out there while Greg stayed with Carter and played for a little bit, then Evan and Greg went home and Carter and I stayed our second night at the hospital.

This was taken before he went to sleep on the second night, it was getting better, but still swollen.

When they came to do their rounds the next morning, the attending did not feel comfortable releasing him since it was still swollen and there was a hard knot next to his nose and cheek (the infection) that they assumed would be getting smaller with the antibiotics. He called an ENT (I think, I can't remember) to come see Carter and let the ENT make the call on whether or not to release him. At this point, I had learned that a million people will come in and examine Carter and every single one told us something different. Some thought it looked bad and he needed to stay another night, some thought it looked fine, but all these were "students". So, when the ENT attending came in, I was ready. I had a million questions and he was the one that got stuck answering them. He felt that Carter was ok to come home and the doctors at the hospital actually scheduled him a follow up appointment with his pediatrician for that Thursday (he was released on a Tuesday) and they also scheduled a follow up with the ENT attending we saw for the following week.

This is what he looked like when he got released about 4pm on Tuesday.

He looked a little better on Wednesday morning and was doing even better on Thursday when he saw his pediatrician. So good, that they told me I could cancel his ENT follow up, which I did. They're assuming it was staph, but since they were never able to get a sample to test, they can't say for sure. They all said that infections like this are common in kids, and places like the nose are common to get them. I'm hoping that is the first and last hospital stay for either of the boys. Greg and I both know that we will be back to the ER for some stitches, broken bones, etc--we've mentally prepared for that with as wild as our boys are, but we can do without the infections, sickness, etc. The only time Carter cried was when the doctor tried to get a sample out of his nose. He was a perfect angel the rest of the time we were there. He didn't whine or fuss. He slept fine at night. He was so good for all the exams he got from all the different doctors and nurses. He was such a trooper.

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