Monday, March 23, 2009

Pneumonia- a rough spring for Charlotte

Miss Charlotte has had a rough 2009. Back in February she came down with a terrible head cold that made its way into her chest. We ended up in the ER on a Saturday (Valentine's Day) and she was diagnosed with "Bronchiolitis" and was given antibiotics and breathing treatments. She then became worse and was diagnosed with "RSV" which is a nasty childhood respiratory virus. After healing from that she was left with wheezing and coughs. Last week we went back to the doctor and found out that she had asthma. It is a "chicken or egg" scenario because it may have been that she had a predisposition towards allergies which caused her to come down with RSV more easily or it could be that the RSV caused damage which then became asthma. Who knows. On top of this, she had a very high fever a few weeks ago with no other symptoms...we took her in and she was diagnosed with a urinary tract infection (uncommon in babies). They think she may have a reflux-like issue in between her urethra/bladder/kidneys which is allowing bacteria to multiply. We have a bladder ultrasound tomorrow to check that situation out and a radiological catheter exam in a few weeks to actually "see" if there is reflux.

After the asthma diagnosis of last week we went back to the doctor the next day because her breathing treatments at home were not helping and her cough was getting worse. She sounded terrible in her chest and had a high fever. After chest x-rays we found out she had pneumonia in her right lung and needed to be hospitalized so that she could be treated with IV antibiotics, hydrated with IV fluids, monitored closely and given more frequent breathing treatments by respiratory specialists. So...Mommy and Charlotte checked in to Lodi Memorial Hospital on Thursday morning. We were happy to see Auntie Aimee working on the floor. She helped by recommending a nurse and helped to get Charlotte's IV started. It was heart-wrenching to watch a baby being held down while doctors and nurses tried to feed a tiny IV tube into her vein. She had blood drawn (yet another stick) and was put on a nasal cannula for oxygen. She was attached to lots of tubes/monitors! The first day was rough. She felt terrible and wanted to just be held. The night in the hospital was long, but she was a good sport. She slept next to me in the hospital bed. The next day was better. Her fever was gone, she felt better and was smiling more. But, trying to keep an active 9.5 month old busy on a hospital bed when she wants to crawl around and mess with her IV is HARD! We were released Friday evening and sent home with instructions and meds. She is much better. We will continue breathing treatments for her asthma as long as needed but we are so happy to have her home. Matt missed his little baby and Lorelei missed her little sister...and we missed them! A big thank you to Grandpa Barrow, Auntie Colleen and Auntie Amanda for helping out so much and taking care of Lorelei so that Matt could still work!

Here are some photos:

Charlotte pneumonia March 2009