Thursday, November 20, 2014

Barfing and Broken Bones

This is Joseph's sad face. If he is looking
at you like this then he is either faking
or he is in SERIOUS PAIN!
Catchy title isn't it?  LOL  Be glad you have not been in my house the last 48 hours! Yesterday all the strength and time I had to post went into yesterday's post on No Shave November.  So you can tell I wasn't up for much!  LOL

After spending some time outside on the back porch with my husband I hear what I first thought was a cat howling in the distance.  John said he thought it was one of the children and went inside to check it out. He came back out a bit later to tell me that James had barfed all over his bed.  He cleaned out the bed and changed James's clothes.

We went into the house for the evening and went to bed.  A few hours later Margaret was screaming.  She had also barfed in her bed. So she was cleaned up and sent back to bed.  Joseph did not want to sleep by himself at that time so he came into my bed.  We all went back to sleep.   I woke late the next morning to head to work.  I had no idea what was going to happen next.

John had made breakfast.  It was delicious. Right as I was finishing up and thinking about running out the door Joseph falls out of his chair and on to the tile floor.  He smacked his left should and the left side of his head on the tile.  My poor baby was crying.  I picked him off the floor.  Daddy takes a look at him and asks where he hurts.  Even though I felt a HUGE (half dollar sized) goose egg on the back of his head that was not where he complained he was hurting.  He said his left should hurt.

This concerned me since this was the same side that he broke when he was two.  I swear I was gone for THREE minutes at best! I had to go to the bathroom.  The children were busy watching PBS so I thought I could make a run to the bathroom.  It is about the only time I have to myself...IF I'm lucky!  While finishing up in the bathroom I hear a LOUD thud and a sharp cry out of pain.  I rush out of the bathroom and into the living room to see all the children calmly laying in the floor watching TV.  I had NO idea what happened but I figured it could not have been too serious or I would have seen someone crying.

That night, when Joseph went to bed, he whined and and could not get comfortable on his left side.  I thought it was strange but then thought nothing more of it. The next morning we got up and he went to physical therapy.  Even the physical therapist thought he was only "off" and seemed to be whining a bit that day.  She had NO idea either!

I took Joseph home from PT and pulled off his fuzzy PJ jumper (he had been in for the last 24 hours; since I heard the fall) to see a HUGE bruise on his left upper chest by his clavicle.  I was HORRIFIED! I carefully bathed him and got him ready to head to a pediatric urgent care.  We got there and where immediately seen.  They took x-rays. He had a MAJOR break!  The doctor said a grown man would have been in tears if he had to crawl around on a broken clavicle like Joseph did.  She was AMAZED at his pain tolerance!  She gave us a script for narcotic pain medicine for him.

Now fast forward to my experience at the local children's hospital.  I took Joseph in and we had to wait in the the waiting room for about 75 minutes after being triaged.  I saw the other people come in after us.  They basically all had respiratory illnesses. I was worried we would pick that up while we were there.  I made sure we limited the amount of contact we had with surfaces and then used lots of hand sanitizer!

We made it back to the room.  The nurse and then the doctor made Joseph move his arm in various positions and watched his reaction.  At best he winced when he moved his arm.  The doctor and nurse were convinced that Joseph was not seriously injured.  I explained to them that Joseph had a high pain tolerance and they were not convinced. I'm not even sure they were going to send us for x-rays until I mentioned Joseph had broken his clavicle before and crawled on it without crying.

So we get sent back for x-rays.  They take FIVE films!  I had not seen so may taken before.  I had a feeling it was broken.  We head back to our room and sit in there for another hour waiting for the doctor to come in. Instead the doctor from the floor comes and and says Joseph's clavicle is broken. I told that doctor I had said it (the clavicle) would be broken to the first doctor that was treating us.  He quickly left the room.  Not ONCE did ANYONE offer to give Joseph pain medicine!

The first doctor came into the room and asked if I had heard the news.  I said yes, that the bone was broken.  I also pointed out I said I was worried it his clavicle was broken earlier and he needed to make a note in his chart about Joseph's VERY high pain tolerance.  He just looked at me.  I mentioned that I have told other doctors of Joseph's high pain tolerance before and they do not believe me because I am "just" the mom. So it would be nice to have documented proof.

Joseph all splinted up.
He rushes out the room as he mentions a tech will be in to help splint Joseph's arm. After some wrangling and me having to convince the tech to use the smallest sling and bandages available we got Joseph taken care of! I wanted to see the x-ray so I could see if the break happened at the site of the old break or it was somewhere new.  Plus I wanted to see the severity of the break.  His last clavicle break was very severe.  It did not help that he was crawling on it last time.  So I asked the nurse to see the x-rays.

Then something VERY interesting happened at Phoenix Children's.  I was told by the nurse I could not see the x-rays because of patient privacy. I said I wanted to see it and I wanted to take a pic of the x-ray on my phone on the light board in our room.  This way I could show his doctor a picture of the x-ray since I knew the records would not be ready for several days.  The head nurse was citing patient privacy too. Really? Um, no!  I am his mother, he is a minor so there is no patient privacy. If I am looking at the x-ray in our room then we are in a private setting.  This was a LOT of BS but I didn't want to fight about it.  From my earlier post on complex medical kids the first rule of hospital visits is to get back out the door as quick as possible!  I already had to ask twice for a copy of the Patient Rights pamphlet.  Now I just wanted to leave.

Out the door we went with the only medical advice given was to immobilize Joseph's arm to his side for the next three to four weeks and give him some over-the-counter motrin for the pain. Poor Joseph was hurting that night.  The next day I called his regular doctor for some pain medication.  She did not want to prescribe it (it has gotten RIDICULOUS in trying to get pain meds from ANY doctor, EVER, for ANY reason!) but in the end I won.  We got three whole days worth of Tylenol with codeine for him.  We are giving it to him only at night so he can sleep more comfortably.  He loves to sleep on his side so it pains him to sleep in the position he is most comfortable.  Now he can finally rest easy!

The good news in the story... We should be able to stop splinting his arm just in time for his birthday.  This is good because I ordered a bouncy house for their birthday!  Hopefully we will have NO more accidents!!!

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