My son is doing pretty well

I thought I’d better give a brief update on my son’s health after posting “Painful reminder” last week.

He’s doing pretty well, and we’re very relieved. Basically he looked like he had strep throat with some redness around his mouth and in his armpits so we took him to see a doctor. He was diagnosed with scarlet fever and given antibiotics. He got worse, much worse, over the next couple of days, including cracked and peeling skin. We returned to the hospital and were sent to another, larger hospital with a pediatric centre. There he was tentatively diagnosed with staphylococcal scalded skin syndrome and given two more, stronger antibotics. He was also quite dehydrated, so IV fluids too.

He lost a lot of skin, and it’s still not great: peeling, scabs, redness, and other welts. It was really awful to see, and scared us a lot. He’s on his fourth antibiotic at home now, and he’s in good spirits. He’s crazy itchy, as you would expect. We’re watching closely because he’s had a few more symptoms that we’re worried about.

The hospital staff at both locations was excellent; I can’t say enough how well we were looked after. I know that emergency room wait times can be bad (we’ve waited a long time ourselves before), but there’s no question that the medical staff is great in our area. No one we spoke with had ever seen a case of this illness before, and it’s to their great credit that they diagnosed it immediately once a few more symptoms┬ápresented themselves.

Thanks to everyone who sent gifts and kind words. We appreciate all the support we received, and we’re all┬árecovering well from one of the scariest things that’s ever happened to us.

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Painful reminder

I’ve been up for the past few days and nights, snatching sleep in one- or two-hour chunks. My boy is pretty sick right now, and I’m exhausted. Exhausted from driving, coaxing, reassuring,…. but mostly from wishing and worrying and crying.

My boy is a lively, happy kid who doesn’t complain and loves to be involved with what’s going on around him. I haven’t hear him laugh in almost a week, and he can’t get out of bed, and I can’t hug him because it’ll hurt him, and I just want to fix it right now and take this pain away.

I don’t remember feeling this helpless before. Maybe my barely-functional brain can’t mine the archives very well right now, but this feels uniquely awful to me at the moment.

This will pass for us, to become a distant, unpleasant memory. For many other families illness is the norm. It’s a painful reminder of how generally great we have it, and how much worse off many others are. It’s sometimes hard to see the larger picture today while we’re living it, but my sympathies go out to those who live with worse and for longer.