Thursday, March 20, 2014

What A Difference A Week Can Make..

This post will not be surrogacy related.. But the next one will be because guess who had an appointment Monday AND a 3D ultrasound today!! I just have to sit down and type that one up.. I have been slowly typing this one up since this past Sunday (March 16)

Friday (March 7th) Brett got home from school and just wasn’t acting normal and laid around all evening. I finally went looking for the thermometer and his temp was somewhere around 100.. Over the weekend he ran a fever ranging from 99-101 but every time I gave him Motrin his fever would come down to normal. Sunday night he was running a fever and Brynna also started running a fever so I decided to keep him home from school and the next morning was able to get him and Brynna into the doctors(on post) that afternoon. By the time we got to the doctors Brett’s temp was back to normal and he was also back to normal. The doctor looked him over and said everything looked fine and he didn’t need to be strep tested. Brynna they did a strep test to because her tonsils looked a little swollen. He told me he would call me if she tested positive for strep. We got home and since Brett was cleared by the doctors I let him go outside to play with his friends while I started cooking dinner. Adam was on 24 hour duty (started at 9am Monday morning), he was coming home for dinner that evening for about an hour and would go back to work until 9am Tuesday morning. I called Brett in to do a few things before dinner. We had dinner, Adam went back to work, and then it was bedtime at 7:30. Friday night sometime between 10:30-11:30 Brett woke up screaming. This was a scream I have NEVER heard before. I couldn’t completely understand what he said but as I run in his room he is in the fetal position. I assume it’s his stomach because Adam was throwing up at work all evening. I grabbed his right ankle to pull his legs down so I can help him sit up and talk to him and he SCREAMS even louder.. That’s when he screamed my “MY LEG HURTS!!!!” Since Adam was gone I carried Brett and put him in bed with me so I could keep an eye on him. I don’t think he was running a fever yet but I can’t remember for sure. I asked him how he hurt his foot and he told me that he was playing at the park and fell off the slide. I decided if he was still in pain the next morning I would take him to the ER.

The next morning Adam got home and stayed with Brynna and Aliana while I took Brett to the Womack ER (on post). We get to the ER and they checked his temp, it was 99.5. They take him back to have an x-ray and put us in a room. They didn’t see any fractures or breaks so the doctor said it was a bad sprain. They wrapped it and he screamed and cried the whole time because of how badly it hurt. At this time it was only a little swollen.. Nothing too crazy so I thought okay it is just sprained we’ll have to loosen it up some and hopefully he can put some pressure on it to go back to school tomorrow (Wednesday). We kept it elevated and iced it and he did some limping/walking. So I THOUGHT it was getting better. Tuesday night Brett again is in EXCRUCIATNG PAIN!! Screaming and crying again. His fever is back up to 103 and he is not sleeping. I tried giving him Motrin and it only went down to 101. NORMALLY whenever I give him Motrin it goes down to normal but this time it didn’t.  I also tried giving him Melatonin to help him sleep. It didn’t work. I was planning on calling his doctors the next morning and seeing if he could get in but we didn’t even make it to midnight. I really wanted to get a little bit of sleep because I was so exhausted and I didn’t know if I should even chance driving. BUT by 11pm I knew that either way I was getting no sleep and his pain wasn’t getting any better. So off to the ER we go…. AGAIN! For the second time in one day. This time we ended up going off post instead of on post and saw a civilian doctor instead of a military doctor. We get there and he is crying because of how much pain he’s in. Since it’s out first time they had to get some info but other than that they got us right in. He was running a 102 fever so they wanted to test him for strep and flu. They did X-Rays on his foot and gave him Tylenol with Codeine to help with the pain. The doctor said he was pretty sure it was broken because of how swollen it was and with how much pain he was in. His strep test ended up coming back positive and his X-rays came back normal. So they prescribed him amoxicillin for his strep and Tylenol and Motrin for his fever. The doctor also said it was probably just a bad sprain. Then sent us home. Thanks to the Tylenol with Codeine he slept a total of 3 hours without waking up in pain but once it wore off he was back up crying in pain..

Wednesday (March 12th) he was back in pain and lots of it. Fever was up in the 104’s and Motrin wasn’t bringing it down much. Even with Motrin it stayed around 102. I had plans on going to get his amoxicillin filled but once I looked at the prescriptions they gave me I realized the ONLY one missing was the amoxicillin!! That afternoon some redness around his ankle bone started to show up. My aunt ended up telling me we should take him back to the ER and have blood work done to check for an infection. Less than 5 minutes later my mom calls and also said that I should probably have his leg checked for an infection. Adam got off work that evening and we took Brynna and Aliana to Kelly’s house and we took Brett back to the ER for the 3rd time!! I explained everything and again he was screaming and crying and in TONS of pain so they got us right back. Whenever the doctor came in I explained that this was now our 3rd ER visit and he was getting worse, his fever was getting higher and higher, and that I wanted blood work done to check for an infection since all the x-rays were not showing anything. The doctor didn’t want to do the blood work. He said he would take a look over the X-ray again to see if he could spot something that the other doctor missed. He came back in and said that he didn’t see anything but that he wanted to put a splint on Brett’s foot and that we could follow up in 10 days and get another x-ray to see if it was actually fractured but just a tiny fracture that wasn’t able to be seen on an x-ray. So pretty much he was sending us home without blood work! UMMM… NO I WANT BLOOD WORK! He believed that it was fractured while I believed it was not. I told the nurse I did not want to sign the discharge papers until the doctor came back in and would do blood work. The doctor ended up coming in and explaining that he is a doctor and went to school for this. He sees breaks, sprains, and fractures every day so he knows what it looks like. But that we don’t see them all the time so that’s why we don’t think it’s fractured. He told us it was unnecessary to do blood work and with him having strep it would give us no answers because his white blood count would be somewhat elevated anyways. The doctor said but if yall still want blood work then I will do it. Adam ended up telling him DO THE BLOOD WORK! He did the blood work and came back with a totally different attitude. His white blood count was at 22% and normal is low to mid-teens.. Yes strep would elevate his white blood count but there was something else causing it to be so high. He ended up recommending giving Brett a bicillin shot for the strep and then prescribing another antibiotic for the infection AND he was also going to prescribe him Tylenol with codeine. THANK GOD! BUT he was still putting a splint on his foot because he still believed there was no infection and that it was just fractured. They told us if the rest of his blood work came back and showed anything not normal they would call us.

Thursday morning Adam went to work like normal and I called to schedule Brett a doctor’s appointment for his foot to try and get a referral for an off post doctor. They weren’t able to get him an appointment until the 24th! I wanted a same day appointment but they weren’t able to get me one. So I decided to not schedule one and whenever we went to his physical the next morning I would explain everything to them and see what they would do for Brett. All morning I was going crazy wishing I could see his ankle just to see if the redness was worse. I took his temp and it was 105!! I gave him motrin and decided I would take a shower (I REALLY NEEDED to take a shower) and then after that I’d take the splint off if it was worse I’d take him to a children’s hospital but if it looked the same or better I’d wait until tomorrow to see the on post doctor. I don’t go to church often but I do pray and I do talk to God. Normally at night before bed but some times during the day. So while I’m in the shower I decided to have a talk with God. I asked him to please give me a sign. If I needed to take him back to the hospital then his ankle REALLY needed to be red and worse than the night before. It couldn’t just be a tiny bit difference. I REALLY needed to be able to notice a difference. So I get out of the shower and start to take his splint off. Brett is crying and screaming and I am praying/talking to God. I get the brace off and there was no doubt about it. Brett NEEDED to get to the hospital ASAP! I take a picture and send it to my mom and aunt. I am soaking wet from just taking a shower. I throw my hair up and then grab some clothes while I’m calling Adam telling him he needs to get home ASAP and that Brett’s ankle was bad. At that moment everything went from bad to horrible! My phone is ringing back to back to back. Brett is screaming in pain because he has to pee but his foot hurts to bad to move so I’m carrying him, Brynna is throwing water all over the bathroom, while Aliana is screaming in her crib. I finally answer my phone and it’s the ER nurse from Cape Fear(the hospital we were at the night before) explaining that Brett’s blood work just came back and she just talked to my husband but since Brett was still running such a high fever we needed to bring him back in. I had plans on Adam staying here with Brynna and Aliana but Kelly (the best person ever!!) told Adam to pack a bag for the girls and drop them off with her so that he could go with me. Thankfully she did because he really needed to be there. Once we got to the ER things went quick. We had all these doctors coming in and out. They got an IV put in right away and were telling us best case and worse case scenarios. There was a chance we could only be in the hospital for a day or two OR we could be in the hospital for a couple weeks to a couple months. It really just depended on more blood work, MRI’s, and how severe Brett’s infection was. The ER doctors thought it was cellulitis but the doctor from the ped’s floor came in and he thought it was an infection in the bone or joint and he wanted to do an MRI. The MRI was booked until the next morning but he was able to get us in right then. I wasn’t able to go in but thankfully Adam could. The nurses said he did better than a lot of adults normally do. After the MRI they sent us up to ped’s and got him started on 3 different IV antibiotics. By the time the results were in the doctors had all left so we were told we wouldn’t know anything until the next morning. I knew I would be getting NO sleep that night thinking about all the “what if’s”. Well that evening a nurse came in to fix Brett’s IV and she told me the pediatrician called. She said the pediatrician wanted to have her update Adam and I and that he thought it was septic arthritis but he wanted an orthopedic doctor to review the MRI and see what he thought…. What in the world is septic arthritis?? All I wanted to know right then was is it a skin, bone, or joint infection? She said “unfortunately it’s joint.” My heart sank.  I was there all by myself (Adam had to run home really quick to let the dogs out before bedtime) and just wanted to bawl my eyes out. I fought off the tears because I didn’t want to scare Brett any more than he already was. As soon as the nurse left I called Adam and let him know and then my mom. My mom ended up booking my grandma on a flight the next morning so she could come help with Brynna and Aliana while Adam and I focused on Brett. I tried my best to stay away from google because I knew it would do more harm than good for me to read what google said.

Friday (March 14th) morning around 7:30 I decided I’d run home and let the dogs out because I had very little clean clothes left and I wanted to put on a load of laundry while I was there. I asked before I left when the doctors normally come and she said about 10am. So I knew I had time but to be quick. Well 10 minutes after I left the doctors showed up. I knew that would happen but if I would have stayed they would have come around 10. Isn’t that how it works haha. They confirmed that he did have septic arthritis and now they needed to do surgery. They also needed to do an echo on his heart to see if the infection had traveled to his heart. That whole week I held it together and didn’t cry once. I have no idea how I kept it together for so long but whenever Adam told me that the infection could be in his heart I hung up the phone and bawled my eyes out. I was so angry and upset at all the doctors that failed us and again I was praying to God that his heart was perfectly fine and no infection was in there. I rushed back to the hospital once I got that news. Thankfully though the echo came back perfect and no infection was in his heart!! My Gigi’s flight landed at 1:50pm and the surgeon was coming to speak with us at 2pm so Adam went to pick Gigi up while I waited to speak with the surgeon. He ended up bringing Gigi back to the hospital so she could see Brett really quick before she went to our house. Well a little bit after they got to the hospital the surgeon walks in and tells us that he is going to cut Brett’s foot open and clean out as much of the infection as he can. The infection was pretty much in the whole foot, wrapped around his ankle, and traveling up his foot. He only wanted to cut the top of the foot open though because he didn’t want to chance damaging anything in his ankle so he would clean out as much as he could and then after that he would continue his IV antibiotics to kill off the rest of the infection. Once we talked to the surgeon I was about to leave and run Gigi to the grocery store to pick up and few things and then come back in time for surgery. Thankfully I let the nurses know because they told me they were taking Brett down to surgery in the next few minutes!! All she had to do was print out some paper work for us to sign and then he’d be off. So again we waited. They take him down to pre op and he knocks out. We were in pre op for about an hour waiting. I was so ready for them to just take him back and be done because I was starting to really freak out on the inside. We asked the anesthesiologist to move his IV while he’s in surgery because the IV that he had was starting to mess up and I’d rather have them put it in while he’s knocked out instead of them having to do it after surgery. He was given Morphine to help with the pain after surgery and only got it that one time. He was in more pain before the surgery and very little pain after the surgery. That night we both slept GREAT! It was our first night of pretty good sleep since Monday.

Saturday morning he had to get blood work done to check his white blood count and his infection level. I’m guessing that hospital goes off a percentage instead of actual white blood cell count because his white blood cell count was 22% on Wednesday night and Saturdays blood work it was down to 18.4% his CRP was 210 on Wednesday night, Thursday when we were admitted they drew blood and it was up to 270, by Saturday it was down to 190. The doctor came in that afternoon and removed the drain. His foot was already looking so much better!! It still had the redness and swelling but you could tell a huge difference from the day before. They told us each time before they change the dressing that they would give him morphine because it would probably be really tender to touch. So for the first 2-3 dressing changes they gave him morphine. I ended up asking to stop the morphine because it made him so agitated and angry. So they switched him to Tylenol with codeine and then ended up completely taking him off pain meds because he really didn’t need them.

Sunday things really started looking up and it looked like he’d be getting released by midweek! He was so excited! He was so tired of being there and hated all the things attached to him! He ended up pulling his IV out on accident and they were hoping he wouldn’t have to get another one BUT they had to continue giving him his antibiotics through his IV so he had to get his 4th IV(he got one Wednesday in the ER, Thursday in the ER, Friday during surgery, and then again on Sunday)! He again was NOT happy about that. Every IV or blood work they had to do it was like holding down the hulk! He fought with all his might until they were done. COMPLETELY DONE! Sunday night he started running a low grade fever of about 100.5. They gave him some motrin and it went away. Sunday night Brynna also started running a little fever so I knew Monday morning I’d have to call and get her an appointment to be strep tested again. Since Brett ended up testing positive on Tuesday I wanted to get Brynna tested again.

Monday went great and they told us that he would probably be released on Tuesday afternoon! We were SO excited! Monday morning I had an OB appointment for myself and then a doctor’s appointment for Brynna. We get to Brynna’s appointment and she lost 1 ½ pounds in a WEEK!! The doctor (not the same doctor we saw last Monday) walks in and says why do you want her strep tested again when she had a positive strep test last week? I said “Well thank you for letting me know because the doctor who strep tested her last week told me that if her strep test came back positive that he’d call me and he never did.” This doctor was furious at the other doctor because she has now had strep for at LEAST a week that we could have already been treating but instead the idiotic doctor let it slide. Use to you could call a number and input your information and it would tell you if your test came back positive or negative and I asked about doing that but he said no he would call me. Apparently he forgot that little detail -__- so NOW I have a child who is in the hospital because he was never strep tested because he showed no symptoms and the doctor didn’t want to strep test him. IF Brett would have been strep tested I would have NEVER let him go outside to play and chance getting another child sick. So he more than likely would have never fell and got septic arthritis. BUT who knows he still could have fell down the stairs or fell getting out of bed. You never know. AND on top of that I have another child whose tonsils and lymph nodes were so swollen because of a negligent doctor ignoring her strep results. AND she also ended up getting strep induce impetigo because of the strep going untreated for so long! Monday night Brett’s splint was removed and they wanted to try out just a wrap with the dressing. Brett didn’t like that his ankle was able to move now because it was still extremely tender. The splint was hard and he couldn’t move his ankle bone but with the wrap it was able to move.

Tuesday morning the pediatrician came in and said as long as Brett’s blood work from that morning came back better than the previous blood work we would be going home! He didn’t expect it to be perfect because he did still have an infection but if the blood work results were worse than the previous one that was not a good sign so he’d have to stay. The blood work came back and we were released!! He would still have lots of follow up appointments and would not be able to go back to school right away. He also has to start physical therapy to help gain strength back in his joint and to help him learn not to favor his right foot. They told us it was up to him when he was ready to put weight on his foot he could. Brynna was SO excited to see her bubba when he got home! The hospital we were at was on lock down due to flu season and was not allowing any children in under the age of 12. So she didn’t see him the whole time he was admitted plus before that he was in so much pain she wasn’t able to really play with him.

Wednesday morning Brett had to go to an appointment at our military clinic and I had to explain everything to them. Sadly the nurse already knew most of Brett and Brynna’s situation and it was apparently the talk of the clinic. In less than 2 weeks Brett lost 3 ½ pounds. He started to try and put weight on his foot but it was still REALLY sore so he stuck to using his “crunches”. That evening it was time to send Gigi back home. With everything that has been going on we decided it’d be best if Gigi took Aliana back to Texas. I felt bad but for our family it was the best option. We needed to focus on Brett and Brynna’s health.

Today Brett had his follow up appointment with his Orthopedic (the one who did his surgery) and he took Brett’s stitches out. Brett had one stitch on both sides of the open wound and the rest of the wound had to heal from the inside out. It is still healing but it looks great! His ankle is still swollen but wow it just looks SO much better compared to one week ago. I asked the doctor when he thinks Brett will be able to go back to school and he said he doesn’t want to send him back right now because of him being so young. The kids won’t know to watch out for his foot. Brett won’t know to protect his foot and he doesn’t want to chance it getting worse instead of better. So he is out of school for another 2-3 weeks, the school will be having a home bound teacher come to work with Brett while he is out of school because even though for now the doctor is saying 2-3 weeks right now. We could go back to his next appointment and he could say that Brett needs to stay out of school for another week or two. But hopefully he will be able to go back soon because he really misses school and playing with his friends.

Also something I want to let y'all know is Brett got septic arthritis from strep throat. It is NOT common. Not everyone who gets strep is going to end up in the hospital like he did. It was a complete freak accident. But hopefully my facebook posts and this blog post will help educate people about it. It was a very quick. If we would not have started antibiotics when we did I could not imagine how much worse things would have been.. I am so extremely thankful for my aunt and mom pushing me to MAKE the doctor do blood work on Brett because if they wouldn't have done blood work we would not have caught the infection in time. Brett injured himself while the strep infection was floating around his body and his body could not fight off the infection so it got bad and it got bad quick!

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