Sunday, August 13, 2006

You're Fired

Even as I typed that title, I groaned. How cliche! But it fits and I can't think of a better one. So there it is.

I've fired our pediatrician. He doesn't know it, because I avoid any and all confrontation at sometimes ridiculous costs, but this past week I quietly switched him out for a better model.

Back in May, all four of us got sick with the same cold. Three of us got better, Aidan did not. After 10 days of a horrible cough and a rattling chest, I took him to Dr. X. "Yes," I was told, "you're right. He's got an upper respiratory infection. Here is a prescription for some cough medicine and an antibiotic."

Very well. Toward the end of the course of antibiotics, his cough started to clear, the rattle all but disappeared, and he seemed to be on the mend. But two days after the course ended, we were right back where we started, and even worse to boot.

Back to Dr. X we went. "No, the infection is gone. Ears are clear. Everything is in order. Keep giving him the cough medicine if the cough is bothersome." So I asked why this cough would persist at all. What could it be? "Possibly allergies," he threw back over his shoulder as he walked out the door.

Well, I'm not one to dictate to a Dr. what his bedside manner should be. It's either to my liking or it's not. Dr. X's was not.

But, he IS a Dr., and I'm not. So I went home and we continued the medicine. Aidan's cough seemed to get a bit better, and then it got worse again, and this past week it got very bad. No other symptoms, just the cough. On Friday I called around and picked another Dr. I thought might be good.

Great news: we LOVE her. Bad news: Aidan has raging infections in both ears, and while Dr. Wonderful agrees the cough sounds atrocious, there is no infection, so we still don't know why he's doing it.

We came away with a 3-week course of antibiotics for the ears, a nebulizer complete with several weeks' worth of breathing treatments for the cough, and an order to go straight to the hospital for chest x-rays, they had called ahead and were expecting us. Apparently Dr. Wonderful wanted to rule out Aidan having aspirated anything. Just because I didn't see it doesn't mean it didn't happen, and a 3-month cough with no other symptoms is definitely unusual and cause for concern.

Ever been with a baby during a chest x-ray? Here is my advice to you: try not to ever be. You can't comfort them anyway, you have to stay behind the shield. Besides, it's "better" if they cry, because then their lungs are filled with air so they can get better pictures. They dropped Aidan into some sort of contraption where he had to hang with his arms up over his head, enclosed in plastic save for his face. It was like a clear plastic mini iron maiden. He must have been horrified. They took, I believe, 5 films.

Then. The next morning I started the antibiotics. He has a very sensitive gag reflex, so when medicine is needed, I just put it in his bottle with his formula. He finished 6 of the 8 ozs, and promptly threw it all up without even waiting to be burped. I know people will say they are not really throwing up, it's spit up, spill a couple tablespoons of milk on the counter, it looks like more than it is, etc., etc., blah blah blah. People, this was throwing up. All. Six. Ounces. Trust me. He soaked through himself and me and six spit rags and a bath towel and the couch. Then he slept for five hours (following a bath, of course).

Thank God the nighttime dose went better.

We're still trying to work out how to keep him from grabbing the nebulizer hose during his breathing treatment, but I guess we'll get there.

Hopefully my littlest man is on the mend. We get the x-ray results on Monday, and have a follow-up visit with Dr. Wonderful a week from Tuesday. I'll keep you posted.


Misty said...

I am so sorry about your fiasco! What a mess! I hope and pray he is on the mend!!

mommy said...

Thanks, Misty.

Sorry I wasn't at church - I wanted to come and talk to you. I got your email - I'll send a reply later on today or tomorrow at the latest.

I'm thinking of your little one, too, and I hope everything is going all right and that you had a good week.


Jamie said...

My shouldn't have been such an ordeal! I am glad to hear that you found Dr. Wonderful. It is always a relief to love your pediatrician. Hoping your little guy keeps doing better!