Thursday, June 03, 2010

Yet another trip to the hospital

Last time I wrote, I had taken Ella to the ER for severe stomach pains and a fever. That morning we went to our regular pediatrician for a follow-up. He said that he didn't think that it was her appendix but told me he'd be on call Wednesday night if she got worse. Which of course she did. I spent 20 minutes on the phone with the doctor, while he had me go through some diagnostic things with her - like having Ella jump up and down, which she wouldn't do. She had also gotten to the point where she wouldn't let me touch her right side.

Off to Dell Children's Medical Center we went, for the second night in a row. Our doctor called ahead to tell them we were coming in the hopes of saving us some waiting time. We got taken back and evaluated pretty quickly. The doctor sent Ella for an abdominal ultrasound in the hopes of definitely ruling out appendicitis. Unfortunately, they couldn't get a clear view of her appendix with the ultrasound, so she had to have a CT scan of her belly.

And this is when I started wanting to punch people.

The ER doc came in and said, "The radiologist called up, and the tip of her appendix is enlarged. So I've called surgery down and started the procedures to admit her." And then she walked out. Ella started sobbing even harder than she already had been, crying that she wanted to go home and go to sleep in her own bed and that she wanted the IV port taken out of her arm.

After a few minutes, the surgery PA came in and told me that she had reviewed the CT scans and that she wasn't convinced that the problem was Ella's appendix. She said it was measuring on the larger side of normal, but that there was no inflammation in the surrounding tissue. She also said that Ella had swollen abdominal lymph nodes on her right side, which was consistent with having a stomach bug. When I asked about the pain and fever, she said that kids with appendicitis are screaming in pain even after having morphine, which is what she would expect Ella to be doing given how long her stomach had been hurting.

The PA told me that they were going to admit Ella for the night and re-check her bloodwork in the morning and see how she was feeling. That was at 11:30pm. We were finally taken to a room at 2:00am. We didn't get settled and to sleep until 3:00 and then nurses came in at 5:00 and 6:00 to get blood samples.

At about 9:00am, the surgeon finally came in to see us and confirmed that the problem was swollen lymph nodes, which can mimic the signs of appendicitis and are one of the most common reasons for kids having to have their appendixes out. Go figure.

He gave us permission to feed Ella breakfast, which brought a smile to her face, and said he'd start the paperwork for getting her discharged. We didn't get to leave the hospital until 2:00pm. Turns out nothing happens quickly when you're in the hospital.

As soon as we got home, Ella crawled into our big bed and slept for four hours straight. I packed up the three little kids and sent them off for the night with B's mother and aunt and then climbed into bed next to Ella.

While we were asleep, B went to an appointment with an orthopedic surgeon who specializes in feet and found out that the ER doc on Sunday was wrong and his foot is actually broken. B is in an air cast for at least 8 weeks.

I managed to sleep in this morning until 10:30, but I still feel like I've been hit by a bus. Ella is still pretty flat, which the doc said to expect since she does have a GI bug of some sort.

The house is a wreck, I'm behind in my work, and today's the first day of summer break.

I swear, we have a big, black cloud o' doom hanging over our house, and it needs to move on immediately or this is going to be a long, long summer.


Alexandra said...

Oh, sweetie: if I were there, I'd come over and clean your bathrooms, scrub your sinks, and make all of you whatever you want for dinner.

But all I can is love on you from over here and pray that your baby gets all the way better soon.


Wendi said...

You're due for a great summer now.

I'm up for a movie whenever you are. (But I refuse to let you see SATC2 because that's just going to make you even more depressed.)

ckh said...

I've been working too much and finally caught up on your blog. Oh My Gosh! I'm so sorry you've had a rough week. That totally sucks.

I wishing you some wind to blow the dark cloud away!

Ann in NJ said...

It never rains but it pours. The good news - Ella doesn't have appendicitis, B has a definitive diagnosis, and hopefully life can move on. The bad news - Ella doesn't have appendicitis (but is still in pain), B has a definitive diagnosis (but has a broken foot), and life will move on regardless.

Hopefully you can laugh about all this in 5 years! Hang in there!