Monday, March 28, 2011

A Trip to the ER

How did you spend your Sunday afternoon? Maybe you were enjoying a break in the weather and taking in some long overdue sunshine... maybe you were getting ready to go do dinner for Abby's 16th Birthday... maybe you were getting out your pen to make your list of to-do's for the week...

Us... well, we spent our Sunday afternoon in the Emergency Room.
This was definately Not the way we intended to spend our first few hours back home, after being gone since Wednesday. We were Supposed to be getting ready to go to dinner for Abby's 16th Birthday! Instead, we found ourselves rushing to the ER with our littlest man, who was bleeding from his ear.

After some parental panic and "convincing" that he would not get in "too much" trouble, we got Clayton to tell us that while playing doctor with his little brother, Maybe he had stuck a digital thermometer into the little guy's ear! Wow! They had been playing so great together and it was clear that it was an accident, still... the thermometer has gone on to it's final resting place.

So, we dropped Clayton off with Grandma and Papa and headed for the ER. Cole was more than overdue for a nap and sitting in the car with his blanket, he must have gotten comfortable, because he kept trying to fall asleep. All I could think was that he was starting to pass out, and I did everything I could to keep him awake until we got there. 

Due to his age and the fact that he had blood in his ear, we were thrilled (kind of ironic to be thrilled while standing in an ER, don't you think? ), well, we were ... thrilled to be pulled Immediately into triage. The young nurse was very sweet with Cole, and assured us that he Loves screaming children, because, "That mean's that they are OK." He proceeded to take a rectal temperature, to which Cole responded with an even Bigger wail! Poor little guy... I'm even more thankful for the Temporal Thermometer my mom bought us when he was born! He's Never going to want to have his temperature taken Ever. Again! Then he hooked up a heart monitor to our little guy's big toe, which brought another Wail! Finally, he looked into his ear and told us that there was, "nothing in there." While this was a relief, we still had to wait to see the physician's assistant to see exactly what damage there was.
When we finally got him checked completely, we were told that he had a punctured eardrum. Wow. Again. Ok, so after a deep breath, we realized that this was the news we actually had been, sort of, expecting to hear. Not hoping, but expecting. That was the bad news. The good news was that 90% of punctured eardrum injuries will heal on their own, and we were told to make an appointment to have him rechecked in 10 days. The bad news... in the remaining 10% of these cases, the injury does not heal on it's own and we would be referred to an Ear, Nose and Throat specialist for further treatment options.

We left with prescriptions for two pain medications and an antibiotic to help prevent any infection over the next week and a half, as well as instructions to, "Keep, It. Dry." Any moisture that gets in past the eardrum, will sit there and deteriorate the bones behind it that register sound waves. A cotton ball and Vaseline will be our new bath time buddies.

The next adventure was to find a 24-Hour Pharmacy. After a 45 minute search, we found one only a few blocks from the hospital, which will be noted for future ER visits... though we don't anticipate any in the near future, we do need to deal with the reality of raising two Boys.
For now... we're hoping that we are fortunate enough to fall into the 90% category. Truly, only time will tell. As for Cole, after the first dose of pain medication started to set in, he was chasing his cousins around Grandma and Papa's house and we were able to Finally enjoy cake and ice cream for Abby's 16th Birthday! Today, he's playing around as if nothing is out of the ordinary. Big brother has been "grounded" as much as a 4 year-old can be, and has been assigned to helping us remember to keep Cole's ear covered and dry during bath time and to give him his medicine.

My darling husband was less than thrilled when I pointed out that it's very likely we'll see a few more ER visits in our future. I pointed out that my parents took me in for stitches on three separate occasions, and I was "just a girl." Oh, the adventures of being a parent. Anyone else visited the ER with their little one lately?


Colleen Cecil said...

We did the ER two weeks ago with our Clayton and a 103 temp and a few small seizures to really freak mom out. (This is another thing the instruction manual that you get when you have a baby was missing – babies can have seizures associated with a high temp.) We ruled out ear infections and determined he was fighting something. His fever was down by morning. In the end the hospital staff commented on Clayton being the happiest baby with a 103 temp they had ever seen. First ER visit in the books and I hope the next one is a long way off.

The Durrer Family said...

So scary, Colleen! We had Clayton in at about 1:30 AM when he was around Cole's age, he was screaming crazy and flopping around, I thought it was a seizure. After 4 hrs. in the ER, they said there was nothing wrong... after logging a couple more of these incidents, though less dramatic, we determined that they happened during the nights when we had been super busy for a day or two and he was over tired. Nightmares! Still, to this day, if he's over tired, he'll walk in his sleep, or wake up screaming for help that something is after him. Gotta love 'em! So glad your Clayton is doing well, can't wait to see him sometime!

Jen and Tonick said...

Cole is going to grow up to be one tough cookie!

The Durrer Family said...

Oh, Jen... I hope so! :)

Christa said...

Yikes! Definitely hoping you're in that 90%! Thankfully, we haven't had any ER trips with Hank, but I know better than to think we'll escape without at least a handful of them. Hank's kind of a fearless child. Plus, I know I sure had my fair share of ER trips, especially for being "just a girl."

The Durrer Family said...

Christa - Here's to hoping that your visits are few and far between!