An unidentified virus

by Jodifur on February 5, 2008

That's what Michael has, an unidentified virus that resulted in a rash. If you are scratching your head and wondering how the hell we ended up in the hospital for that, well so am I. I'm actually going to walk through what happened, not because I think you all care so much, but because I think I made some mistakes that could have avoided all this nonsense. I know a lot of moms read this blog and trust me, YOU are responsible for your child's medical care. The entire time we were in the hospital, no one once spoke to Doug, it was always me. And I'm sorry, it's going to get long. I actually hate long blog entries, I like to get in and out, that's why I don't write them

Friday Michael had a high fever. Friday night he he was up all night complaining that his ears hurt. Saturday morning we took him to the doctor and was told he had a sore throat. Not strep, a sore throat. Sunday morning he threw up twice, Sunday afternoon he developed a rash all over his body. I called the pediatrician and was told to get him to an ER immediately.

We went to my least favorite hospital in the area. Not because I wanted to, but because the doctor insisted we go there since it was the closest and they have privileges there. They also have privileges at Children's hospital, which I should have asked to go to. Mistake #1. I should have asked to be sent. They do not have an ER.

We got to the ER and Michael is running around like a lunatic, like there is nothing wrong with him. He is running 102. They run a bunch of tests on him and the nurse keeps telling me the tests look fine. The ER doctor walks in, with a big smile on his face, and says he was admitting him. I honestly thought he was kidding. Really. I thought he was going to follow up with, just kidding you can go. When I finally got that he was not kidding, I lost it. I started hysterically crying. Michael kept saying, "Mommy you okay, Mommy I can help you." The doctor never explained why (Mistake #2, keep asking questions), just told me my pediatrician insisted on it. (By the way, this was not my pediatrician, but a doctor in the practice). I waited an hour and then asked for the doctor to be paged. (Mistake #3, should have asked to speak to the doctor immediately). She kept saying he was at risk for Kawasaki and it was better to keep him here than send him home. The doctor at the ER did not think he had Kawasaki, those kids are really sick and he was fine. (I have learned at his doctors appointment today from my doctor that I should have insisted he be released and be at their office first thing in the morning. She told me to push harder. I explained that was a hard thing to do when a doctor is telling you something. I am not a doctor, I did not go to med school. Mistake #4.) Mistake #5, should have asked for a second opinion, or a transfer to Children's.

We get upstairs to the pediatrics floor, and the doctor on staff also said she does not believe he had Kawasaki, but my pediatrician is insisting he does. Why does the one person who has not seen him have so much power? They will watch him, repeat the labs tomorrow, and get a cardiac consult, and go from there. We are up all night at the hospital. Why do they insist in coming into your room at all hours? Why do they wake your kid up at 6 am to look at his rash? Why are hospitals so loud and not dark? They made Michael sleep with an IV and a heart rate monitor and he kept getting himself tangled in them and would wake himself up.

His fever breaks at 11:30 pm. I know for sure that is when it broke because he woke up screaming and he was soaking wet. Because his fever broke, we are out of the running for Kawasaki. You can only have Kawasaki if you have a fever for 5 days. He did not. In the afternoon on Monday another doctor from my practice came and looked at him. And by looked at him, I mean she looked at him. She did not touch him. She also did not understand why we were there. They kept us until 4 pm to make sure the fever did not come back. They were going to keep us longer but at 4 pm when Michael, who really was such a trooper through this whole nonsense, started to break down when some student nurses who were useless were trying to do an exam on him and had no bedside manner whatsoever. I told them I was done, we were done. There was no reason to be here and I wanted to see a doctor RIGHT NOW! We got released with a promise to make an appointment first thing in the morning. I called the doctor as they were standing there, anything to get the hell out of there.

The doctor I saw this morning, my doctor, had no understanding of why we had been hospitalized. Even more amazing, when I got to the doctors office, they put us in the chicken pox room. I explained to her everything that happened. and she said she would talk to the other doctors. I explained that if a doctor insists a child needs to be hospitalized, that doctor needs to communicate with the parent because the hospital is not going to. The hospital washed their hands of the situation and really did nothing for us or to us.

In the end Michael was diagnosed with an unidentified virus. And a note that he is fine to go to daycare. Because if you saw the rash on this kid, you would not think so.

Don't get me wrong, I am incredibly grateful he is ok. And I understand erring on the side of caution. Better he be hospitalized then sent home and something happens. But, you need all 5 symptoms to have Kawasaki and he barely had two. Way to jump the gun a little.

Lessons learned: ask questions, push harder, go to the hospital you want to, don't let doctors bully you, you know your kid! If the doctors are telling you kids who have this disease are miserable and yours is running around the ER happy as a clam, they don't have it.

Thank you all for your thoughts, prayers, comments and kind emails. This blog and the friends I've made saved me here. Robbin was helping me diagnose him this morning. Every email, every comment, brought tears to my eyes.
I do not know how parents of chronically ill kids do it. I never want to hear ER, hospital, or your child needs to be admitted again. Watching Michael get an IV and blood drawn over and over again was heartbroken. He was traumatized, for absolutely no reason.

{ 52 comments }

 <a href="http://www.blogger.com/profile/02512361671288802965" rel="nofollow February 6, 2008 at 12:12 am

Don’t worry – I WORK in the field, and I am not always as insistent as I should be. I have a round of completely unnecessary antibiotics under my belt to prove it.

My mom went through this recently when they did NOT tell her that an intestinal virus can cause transient lactase deficiency. She couldn’t figure out why her intestinal cramps were going away on schedule when she was downing milk like a baby calf. I told her to cut out the milk for 72 hours – and sure enough, within 8 hours she was fine.

Good LORD, some MDs….

Overpaid technicians.

(So saith the PhD.)

 <a href="http://www.blogger.com/profile/02512361671288802965" rel="nofollow February 6, 2008 at 12:12 am

Don’t worry – I WORK in the field, and I am not always as insistent as I should be. I have a round of completely unnecessary antibiotics under my belt to prove it.

My mom went through this recently when they did NOT tell her that an intestinal virus can cause transient lactase deficiency. She couldn’t figure out why her intestinal cramps were going away on schedule when she was downing milk like a baby calf. I told her to cut out the milk for 72 hours – and sure enough, within 8 hours she was fine.

Good LORD, some MDs….

Overpaid technicians.

(So saith the PhD.)

 <a href="http://www.blogger.com/profile/02512361671288802965" rel="nofollow February 6, 2008 at 12:12 am

Don’t worry – I WORK in the field, and I am not always as insistent as I should be. I have a round of completely unnecessary antibiotics under my belt to prove it.

My mom went through this recently when they did NOT tell her that an intestinal virus can cause transient lactase deficiency. She couldn’t figure out why her intestinal cramps were going away on schedule when she was downing milk like a baby calf. I told her to cut out the milk for 72 hours – and sure enough, within 8 hours she was fine.

Good LORD, some MDs….

Overpaid technicians.

(So saith the PhD.)

 <a href="http://www.blogger.com/profile/02512361671288802965" rel="nofollow February 6, 2008 at 12:12 am

Don’t worry – I WORK in the field, and I am not always as insistent as I should be. I have a round of completely unnecessary antibiotics under my belt to prove it.

My mom went through this recently when they did NOT tell her that an intestinal virus can cause transient lactase deficiency. She couldn’t figure out why her intestinal cramps were going away on schedule when she was downing milk like a baby calf. I told her to cut out the milk for 72 hours – and sure enough, within 8 hours she was fine.

Good LORD, some MDs….

Overpaid technicians.

(So saith the PhD.)

 <a href="http://www.blogger.com/profile/02829997832829902012" rel="nofollow February 6, 2008 at 12:34 am

I am so sorry you guys went through this. Don’t beat yourself up too much. I think everyone learns from a situation like this. I know I learned from mine.

I would still call about filing a complaint. 1 doc should not have been the only voice in this decision and no one else did anything for you!

Sam

 <a href="http://www.blogger.com/profile/02829997832829902012" rel="nofollow February 6, 2008 at 12:34 am

I am so sorry you guys went through this. Don’t beat yourself up too much. I think everyone learns from a situation like this. I know I learned from mine.

I would still call about filing a complaint. 1 doc should not have been the only voice in this decision and no one else did anything for you!

Sam

 <a href="http://www.blogger.com/profile/02829997832829902012" rel="nofollow February 6, 2008 at 12:34 am

I am so sorry you guys went through this. Don’t beat yourself up too much. I think everyone learns from a situation like this. I know I learned from mine.

I would still call about filing a complaint. 1 doc should not have been the only voice in this decision and no one else did anything for you!

Sam

 <a href="http://www.blogger.com/profile/02829997832829902012" rel="nofollow February 6, 2008 at 12:34 am

I am so sorry you guys went through this. Don’t beat yourself up too much. I think everyone learns from a situation like this. I know I learned from mine.

I would still call about filing a complaint. 1 doc should not have been the only voice in this decision and no one else did anything for you!

Sam

 <a href="http://www.blogger.com/profile/10873698815704306017" rel="nofollow February 6, 2008 at 4:02 am

WOW, I am so sorry you all had to go through this. Ridiculous. Glad he is okay though.

 <a href="http://www.blogger.com/profile/10873698815704306017" rel="nofollow February 6, 2008 at 4:02 am

WOW, I am so sorry you all had to go through this. Ridiculous. Glad he is okay though.

 <a href="http://www.blogger.com/profile/10873698815704306017" rel="nofollow February 6, 2008 at 4:02 am

WOW, I am so sorry you all had to go through this. Ridiculous. Glad he is okay though.

 <a href="http://www.blogger.com/profile/10873698815704306017" rel="nofollow February 6, 2008 at 4:02 am

WOW, I am so sorry you all had to go through this. Ridiculous. Glad he is okay though.

 <a href="http://www.blogger.com/profile/15696788038401380047" rel="nofollow February 6, 2008 at 4:17 am

You did not do anything wrong! The doctors and hospital did, absolutely, but you did the best you could with the information they gave you to protect and care for your child. Sure, good lessons learned for next time (god forbid), but please don’t beat yourself up for trying to be a good mom. None of the blame here is yours.

 <a href="http://www.blogger.com/profile/15696788038401380047" rel="nofollow February 6, 2008 at 4:17 am

You did not do anything wrong! The doctors and hospital did, absolutely, but you did the best you could with the information they gave you to protect and care for your child. Sure, good lessons learned for next time (god forbid), but please don’t beat yourself up for trying to be a good mom. None of the blame here is yours.

 <a href="http://www.blogger.com/profile/15696788038401380047" rel="nofollow February 6, 2008 at 4:17 am

You did not do anything wrong! The doctors and hospital did, absolutely, but you did the best you could with the information they gave you to protect and care for your child. Sure, good lessons learned for next time (god forbid), but please don’t beat yourself up for trying to be a good mom. None of the blame here is yours.

 <a href="http://www.blogger.com/profile/15696788038401380047" rel="nofollow February 6, 2008 at 4:17 am

You did not do anything wrong! The doctors and hospital did, absolutely, but you did the best you could with the information they gave you to protect and care for your child. Sure, good lessons learned for next time (god forbid), but please don’t beat yourself up for trying to be a good mom. None of the blame here is yours.

 <a href="http://www.blogger.com/profile/10740564940180181887" rel="nofollow February 6, 2008 at 4:25 am

Poor baby, and poor mama too. What a weekend! I’m glad he is home and over the fever though. That’s a relief. It’s crazy you have to work so hard to get good care at the hospital isn’t it. We’ve been very lucky with Nicky so far, but I learned my lesson on a mishandled case of e-coli that I had. I am a LOT more vocal now!

Hopefully he’s done with this mystery virus.

 <a href="http://www.blogger.com/profile/10740564940180181887" rel="nofollow February 6, 2008 at 4:25 am

Poor baby, and poor mama too. What a weekend! I’m glad he is home and over the fever though. That’s a relief. It’s crazy you have to work so hard to get good care at the hospital isn’t it. We’ve been very lucky with Nicky so far, but I learned my lesson on a mishandled case of e-coli that I had. I am a LOT more vocal now!

Hopefully he’s done with this mystery virus.

 <a href="http://www.blogger.com/profile/10740564940180181887" rel="nofollow February 6, 2008 at 4:25 am

Poor baby, and poor mama too. What a weekend! I’m glad he is home and over the fever though. That’s a relief. It’s crazy you have to work so hard to get good care at the hospital isn’t it. We’ve been very lucky with Nicky so far, but I learned my lesson on a mishandled case of e-coli that I had. I am a LOT more vocal now!

Hopefully he’s done with this mystery virus.

 <a href="http://www.blogger.com/profile/10740564940180181887" rel="nofollow February 6, 2008 at 4:25 am

Poor baby, and poor mama too. What a weekend! I’m glad he is home and over the fever though. That’s a relief. It’s crazy you have to work so hard to get good care at the hospital isn’t it. We’ve been very lucky with Nicky so far, but I learned my lesson on a mishandled case of e-coli that I had. I am a LOT more vocal now!

Hopefully he’s done with this mystery virus.

 <a href="http://www.blogger.com/profile/14342826784650208124" rel="nofollow February 6, 2008 at 5:02 am

What an ordeal! I’m so sorry you all had to go through that. You deserve a break in the health department for a good long time now.

 <a href="http://www.blogger.com/profile/00557198807136105825" rel="nofollow February 6, 2008 at 5:02 am

I’m so glad this nightmare is over for you. I too am learning about the importance of asking questions and standing up for your child.

 <a href="http://www.blogger.com/profile/14342826784650208124" rel="nofollow February 6, 2008 at 5:02 am

What an ordeal! I’m so sorry you all had to go through that. You deserve a break in the health department for a good long time now.

 <a href="http://www.blogger.com/profile/00557198807136105825" rel="nofollow February 6, 2008 at 5:02 am

I’m so glad this nightmare is over for you. I too am learning about the importance of asking questions and standing up for your child.

 <a href="http://www.blogger.com/profile/14342826784650208124" rel="nofollow February 6, 2008 at 5:02 am

What an ordeal! I’m so sorry you all had to go through that. You deserve a break in the health department for a good long time now.

 <a href="http://www.blogger.com/profile/00557198807136105825" rel="nofollow February 6, 2008 at 5:02 am

I’m so glad this nightmare is over for you. I too am learning about the importance of asking questions and standing up for your child.

 <a href="http://www.blogger.com/profile/14342826784650208124" rel="nofollow February 6, 2008 at 5:02 am

What an ordeal! I’m so sorry you all had to go through that. You deserve a break in the health department for a good long time now.

 <a href="http://www.blogger.com/profile/00557198807136105825" rel="nofollow February 6, 2008 at 5:02 am

I’m so glad this nightmare is over for you. I too am learning about the importance of asking questions and standing up for your child.

 <a href="http://www.blogger.com/profile/18010155174814652914" rel="nofollow February 6, 2008 at 5:07 am

How horrible! Hopefully the rash and unknown virus are well on their way out.

I am an RN, and of all the people I have ever worked with (physicians, nurses, and techs alike) all agreed that we would be on duty for whoever was getting treated. Because unfortunately, if you don’t know the ropes, or if you can’t stand up for yourself because you don’t feel well, you totally end up getting pushed around.

 <a href="http://www.blogger.com/profile/18010155174814652914" rel="nofollow February 6, 2008 at 5:07 am

How horrible! Hopefully the rash and unknown virus are well on their way out.

I am an RN, and of all the people I have ever worked with (physicians, nurses, and techs alike) all agreed that we would be on duty for whoever was getting treated. Because unfortunately, if you don’t know the ropes, or if you can’t stand up for yourself because you don’t feel well, you totally end up getting pushed around.

 <a href="http://www.blogger.com/profile/18010155174814652914" rel="nofollow February 6, 2008 at 5:07 am

How horrible! Hopefully the rash and unknown virus are well on their way out.

I am an RN, and of all the people I have ever worked with (physicians, nurses, and techs alike) all agreed that we would be on duty for whoever was getting treated. Because unfortunately, if you don’t know the ropes, or if you can’t stand up for yourself because you don’t feel well, you totally end up getting pushed around.

 <a href="http://www.blogger.com/profile/18010155174814652914" rel="nofollow February 6, 2008 at 5:07 am

How horrible! Hopefully the rash and unknown virus are well on their way out.

I am an RN, and of all the people I have ever worked with (physicians, nurses, and techs alike) all agreed that we would be on duty for whoever was getting treated. Because unfortunately, if you don’t know the ropes, or if you can’t stand up for yourself because you don’t feel well, you totally end up getting pushed around.

 <a href="http://www.blogger.com/profile/15779961065417497337" rel="nofollow February 6, 2008 at 5:47 pm

I’m so sorry. How rotten all around.

 <a href="http://www.blogger.com/profile/15779961065417497337" rel="nofollow February 6, 2008 at 5:47 pm

I’m so sorry. How rotten all around.

 <a href="http://www.blogger.com/profile/15779961065417497337" rel="nofollow February 6, 2008 at 5:47 pm

I’m so sorry. How rotten all around.

 <a href="http://www.blogger.com/profile/15779961065417497337" rel="nofollow February 6, 2008 at 5:47 pm

I’m so sorry. How rotten all around.

 <a href="http://www.blogger.com/profile/04349805613153022007" rel="nofollow February 6, 2008 at 7:09 pm

I’m not a mom, but you did everything you could. You always kept him as your main concern. Doctors fail us sometimes. Loving your child is never wrong. I’m so glad he’s OK.

 <a href="http://www.blogger.com/profile/04349805613153022007" rel="nofollow February 6, 2008 at 7:09 pm

I’m not a mom, but you did everything you could. You always kept him as your main concern. Doctors fail us sometimes. Loving your child is never wrong. I’m so glad he’s OK.

 <a href="http://www.blogger.com/profile/04349805613153022007" rel="nofollow February 6, 2008 at 7:09 pm

I’m not a mom, but you did everything you could. You always kept him as your main concern. Doctors fail us sometimes. Loving your child is never wrong. I’m so glad he’s OK.

 <a href="http://www.blogger.com/profile/04349805613153022007" rel="nofollow February 6, 2008 at 7:09 pm

I’m not a mom, but you did everything you could. You always kept him as your main concern. Doctors fail us sometimes. Loving your child is never wrong. I’m so glad he’s OK.

 <a href="http://www.blogger.com/profile/02901531303924805180" rel="nofollow February 9, 2008 at 8:45 am

I’m a few days late, but glad to hear he is doing well.

It sounds like you did everything right because you were always just trying to make him better.

But now you know. Always ask for what you want.

SO, SO glad he’s OK.

 <a href="http://www.blogger.com/profile/02901531303924805180" rel="nofollow February 9, 2008 at 8:45 am

I’m a few days late, but glad to hear he is doing well.

It sounds like you did everything right because you were always just trying to make him better.

But now you know. Always ask for what you want.

SO, SO glad he’s OK.

 <a href="http://www.blogger.com/profile/02901531303924805180" rel="nofollow February 9, 2008 at 8:45 am

I’m a few days late, but glad to hear he is doing well.

It sounds like you did everything right because you were always just trying to make him better.

But now you know. Always ask for what you want.

SO, SO glad he’s OK.

 <a href="http://www.blogger.com/profile/02901531303924805180" rel="nofollow February 9, 2008 at 8:45 am

I’m a few days late, but glad to hear he is doing well.

It sounds like you did everything right because you were always just trying to make him better.

But now you know. Always ask for what you want.

SO, SO glad he’s OK.

 <a href="http://www.blogger.com/profile/07021747317121416487" rel="nofollow February 12, 2008 at 4:37 am

I’m so sorry you had to deal with all of that. It’s so hard to question what doctor’s have you do. You figure they know what they’re doing.

So glad Michael is OK. It does stink to end up with an “unidentified virus” diagnosis though.

 <a href="http://www.blogger.com/profile/07021747317121416487" rel="nofollow February 12, 2008 at 4:37 am

I’m so sorry you had to deal with all of that. It’s so hard to question what doctor’s have you do. You figure they know what they’re doing.

So glad Michael is OK. It does stink to end up with an “unidentified virus” diagnosis though.

 <a href="http://www.blogger.com/profile/07021747317121416487" rel="nofollow February 12, 2008 at 4:37 am

I’m so sorry you had to deal with all of that. It’s so hard to question what doctor’s have you do. You figure they know what they’re doing.

So glad Michael is OK. It does stink to end up with an “unidentified virus” diagnosis though.

 <a href="http://www.blogger.com/profile/07021747317121416487" rel="nofollow February 12, 2008 at 4:37 am

I’m so sorry you had to deal with all of that. It’s so hard to question what doctor’s have you do. You figure they know what they’re doing.

So glad Michael is OK. It does stink to end up with an “unidentified virus” diagnosis though.

 <a href="http://www.blogger.com/profile/00139191935886860839" rel="nofollow February 15, 2008 at 7:23 am

Oh, I’m sorry I missed this while it was happening and am just commenting now. This sounds awful. I have the impression that lots of doctors like to admit people who go to the ER for even small things. Good thing Michael doesn’t have Kawasaki, though….

 <a href="http://www.blogger.com/profile/00139191935886860839" rel="nofollow February 15, 2008 at 7:23 am

Oh, I’m sorry I missed this while it was happening and am just commenting now. This sounds awful. I have the impression that lots of doctors like to admit people who go to the ER for even small things. Good thing Michael doesn’t have Kawasaki, though….

 <a href="http://www.blogger.com/profile/00139191935886860839" rel="nofollow February 15, 2008 at 7:23 am

Oh, I’m sorry I missed this while it was happening and am just commenting now. This sounds awful. I have the impression that lots of doctors like to admit people who go to the ER for even small things. Good thing Michael doesn’t have Kawasaki, though….

 <a href="http://www.blogger.com/profile/00139191935886860839" rel="nofollow February 15, 2008 at 7:23 am

Oh, I’m sorry I missed this while it was happening and am just commenting now. This sounds awful. I have the impression that lots of doctors like to admit people who go to the ER for even small things. Good thing Michael doesn’t have Kawasaki, though….

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