Friday, June 27, 2008

Weathering the Colds

I previously posted about a Monday trip to a local farm for strawberry picking. Although last year's trip proved legendary for all the wrong reasons, I made a point of not making the same mistakes again and decided to leave at the first sign of my son's fussiness.

Meltdown averted.

My son is actually a pretty happy boy, so I initially assessed his case of the crankies as the result of the latest wave of teeth making their way through his gums. He got the two front, bottom teeth first (as is typical), but he then got the top #2 teeth instead of his front teeth.

I know, I know, vampires are cute, but this order threw me off a bit and, of course, led to worry. Why aren't the front two coming in? Is something wrong? Are they stuck?

So, when he started to experience some restless nights, I just prepared myself for their inevitable debut. Unlike the previous teeth, however, he was pretty fussy. Surprising, but not yet alarming.

On Monday we went strawberry picking (he was not allowed to eat any, but he squished a few) and that afternoon we headed to the doctor's for his first year well visit.

Everything checked out and he got a happy and complete report. He did have a very low grade temperature, which the doctor accredited to the bulbous gums retaining the incumbent teeth. We finished up with two vaccines (the pneumococcal and the varicella) and we headed home.

48 hours later, foreshadowed by wakeful nights and excessive fussiness, the rash decided to show itself.

Now, I had heard of kids actually getting a little, non-contagious case of chicken pox from the varicella (shout out to Nick and Cool-Man Kyle), but his rash was lace-patterned and covered his entire trunk and forehead.

And he was MISERABLE.

A call to the doctor confirmed the reaction and into the Aveno tub he went with a lengthy discussion between my husband and I about the administering of Benadryl. I had heard from three different people that Benadryl is a soporific crap shoot. Half of all kids knock right out, and the other half get completely wired and spend the night doing cartwheels in their crib.

Since our own little patient was not at all itchy, we decided to just lube him up and watch what happened.

He fell asleep fine, but after waking up three times by 11, we decided Benadryl was in order.

He slept until 7:30 the next morning....shout out to God.

He then went back up for a nap at 9:15. With the rash showing no signs of waning, another call to the doctor was put in. Needing to see what we were dealing with, the doctor summoned us for a full evaluation and the dreaded culture.

He was tired, he was clingy, and he was so brave.

And they really didn't have an answer. ARGH.

It could be the shot, or it just could be some random, weird virus that is typical of summer. The only thing they did rule out was a strawberry allergy...but even that has me a little leery. We were sent home with the instructions to keep the Benadryl coming and ride it out.

Here's why I am angry:

1) My son has only been sick one other time. He caught a cold right at Christmas, two days after his 6 month check up. And now, two days after his one year check up, he has his second ailment. Conclusion: The doctor's office is doing more harm than good. The next time we go, everyone is donning haz mat gear.

2) When I asked the doctor if there is a test for strawberry allergies, she responded, "Hmmm...I really don't know." And I don't know why anyone awarded you a medical license.

3) When pondering the possibility of a vaccine reaction over some random virus, she remarked, "Gee, this is a tough one. I really don't know what it could be." Hmm...I imagine the same response was made at the moment of your own birth.

Okay, that last one was out of line....but....ARGH!

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