Saturday, January 16, 2010

Go For the Brain

So Princess Bean has been sick. Scary sick. It was a crazy week that included a ER visits, ambulance rides and a hospital stay. We met some interesting people and received some interesting advice along the way. Some helpful, some not so much. But, I will share it all with you nonetheless...She started with a little sniffle on Sunday. Then 4 am on Tuesday morning I heard a cough that made my heart skip a few beats. I had been sleeping on my couch holding her because every time she fell asleep she was choking on phlegm. She was having a hard time breathing and needed medical attention. So I sprang into action calling the doc and getting dressed. I ended up taking her to the ER. She was diagnosed with RSV (a respiratory virus that can affect the lungs in infants) RSV can progress quickly and gets worse before it gets better. Since its viral there is no medication for it. Just treatment of the symptoms. She had 3 ER visits, 2 pediatrician visits and one hospital admission between Tuesday and Saturday. And since one hospital in town does not have a pediatric unit she also had 2 ambulance rides-one from the pediatricians office to the ER and then from there to the other hospital across town to be admitted.

Basically the docs and nurses we dealt with advised treating the congestion and coughing with various methods that included hanging her upside down and beating her back, then flooding her with saline and shoving a bulb syringe as far up her nostrils as we can to suction snot out. Then, wait for her to choke and begin to suction the phlegm from the back or her throat. Fun times.

I was "trained' by the nurses so I would be able to do this at home. It was stressful, but I gave it my best shot.

At one point I was suctioning her snot and the nurse was cheering, "Don't be afraid, go for the brain!!"

I am not kidding.

So after a couple days I took her home. I followed doctors orders, along with help from Hubby. We suctioned her nose until it bled and her throat until she vomited.

And then I fell into a puddle of tears.

We decided there MUST be a more humane way to help alleviate congestion in a coughing, choking infant. So...

Hubby built a Humidity Tent for Isabella. This was suggested to us by a different doc than the one who thought the saline and suction was effective. She said to tie a sheet over the top of the crib and use a cool air humidifier to blow moisture in. Well, nice thought. But, our Princess doesn't sleep in her crib. Hubby often wonders why he "built" a nursery for her since she never sleeps in there. I remind him that he didn't build it, he just painted it AND she is only a tiny baby. But, in fact she is getting bigger and older. And she slept in a hospital crib for 2 nights, so I thought it would be a perfect time to transition her into her own crib.

Yeah. That didn't go well.

So we moved her chair/bed into her room and Hubby tied a sheet up and put the humidifier under there with her. There was scissors, yarn, scotch tape and eventually duct tape involved. It looks like a scene from M.A.S.H., but it seems to be helping. And there is a lot less crying (on my part) than with other methods we have tried.


  1. Oh, Carrie. I'm so sorry you've had to go through so so much with little Isabella. We're all praying for you and her and your entire family that things get easier soon. :) Happy thoughts!!!

  2. Oh no! Poor baby! I hope she gets better SOON! I'll be praying for her! (((HUGS)))

  3. Sherry and Jennifer- thanks so much for your thoughts!! She is feeling much better.