We're home!! Again. Josh's staph infection (MRSA) was abscessed so we had to admit him to the hospital (Medical City of Dallas this time) for treatment. We went in thinking it would be a day-long procedure of pricking the skin, draining out puss, bandaging and sending us home with a prescription. Ah, no. That'd be too easy. His tushy required a surgical incision (two actually) which required them to knock him out with anesthesia for half an hour. Here's an email Rusty sent to his parents:

I left you a voicemail, but Josh had to go to surgery because the
infection would have been too painful to work on with him awake. He's out
and in recovery. The wound has absorbent material in it (I'm told) and 2
drains. They are going to keep him at least 2 days, maybe 3. His white
cell count I am told was at 45000 while a normal count is around 15000, so
he was in really really bad shape.

I'll let you know more when I can. I'm at home picking up stuff now to
spend the night there. ~Rusty

We packed to spend the day in the hospital and were shocked when the doctor told us he would be in the hospital for a few days. Days!? I said to Rusty after he left. We were there starting Sunday morning, Monday, and discharged, surprisingly by Tuesday (today)- though we didn't expect to be out until Wednesday or Thursday.

He's still in the hospital and still getting the vancomycin every 6 hours
(25ml's). The doctor's are talking about taking the rubber holding the
wound open out tomorrow. He's still really really sore though. He favors
that side of his butt and he fell on his butt earlier and was just
screaming. I figure right now that he won't be out until Thursday.

Josh won't let anyone share the bed with him so we are taking turns
spending the night there. I am at home again tonight catching up on
stuff. I'll go by the office for another 2 or 3 hours tomorrow. I'll
spend the night with Josh tomorrow so Sarah can get some sleep. ~Rusty

The lack of sleep he's referring to is from my first night's experience. We gave him Tylenol with 4 mL of codeine to help him sleep and take away the pain. Oh boy. Josh had lucid dreams while sleeping like a baby. He sat up at one point and said "Noddy!" then rolled over and when back to sleep. Other times he said No! mine, and daddy. If you ever wondered what a 2-year-old dreams about, there ya go. In between his sleep talking, the nurses gave him antibiotics by I.V. every 4-6 hours and checked his blood pressure and temperature. The machine they used to administer the antibiotics beeped when the line was occluded, beeped when it was half done, beeped when it had ten minute left and beeped when it was finished. So with a 30 minute I.V. timer, I really didn't sleep much. Twice. And Josh woke up at bloody 6:30am ready to whine that the TV wasn't on and that he wanted milk and needed a new diaper and 'where's daddy'? It took me hours to finally feel fully awake.

But all that's behind us. Now we we're at home and can care for him here. He's taking antibiotics three times a day (and he doesn't like how Cleocin (or Clindamycin) taste so we either have to force it down or sneak it in) and has to sit in warm water three times a day. He's still draining out puss and a little blood from his incisions. It's suppose to continue to ooze out as it heals. We have a check up appointment in two weeks and instructions to seek immediate help if it looks like it's swelling or otherwise getting worse. Diaper changes are painful for him because of the tape used to keep gauze in place under the diaper and because he's just sensitive to that area. Diaper changes are a two-person job right now but may get easier- I hope. It's really only contagious by touching the infecting area and passing it on. Breathing, coughing and licking won't transmit staph (unless it's on your mouth) but if Josh scratches his butt then touches someone, it can pass. Although the doctor didn't specifically say this, we're pretty much staying away from enclosed public places and close proximity to other kids until he's healed. He can't go to school until he's fully healed, which should be 2 weeks out. So for at least 2 weeks, no playdates, mall play areas, pools, or kiddie places (sorry Byron). I figure outdoor play grounds are fair game though, especially if there aren't lots of kids around.

This also sets me back in my ability to work on the side, but that's another blog.

This whole experience has been tiring on us. Mostly on Josh. I had a hard time with the asthma attack because it was more intense involving oxygen tubes, I.V. and a blood oxygen sensor. Somehow the asthma attack registered more as a life dangering threat than a staph infection on the butt. Rusty had a hard time with the second hospitalization because Josh was in physical pain. Although he likely caught his infection while at Presbyterian Hospital of Plano last week, it's still my preferred hospital. It's way, way more kid friendly, parent friendly, cleaner, newer and generally cozier. Rusty and I joked we should start a Zagat list for kid friendly hospitals.

In other news, I recently bought three more maternity shirts. yay! Summer clothes are starting to go on sale so I grabbed a few mediums while they're still on the racks. I'll probably sell them next Spring at a consignment sale and get some of the money back. Baby 2 is bumping and thumping more and more. I've started craving dried fruit (like prunes), citrus juices and tomato sauce. I haven't been very good about eating my veggies so I'm trying a new tactic by buying some carrot chips and a zucchini to sneak into a few meals this week. Oh, and peanut butter. Anything with peanut butter- yum. I find myself picking up the peanut butter jar at least once a day, even if to just smell it and contemplate what I'll snack on. Shakes with peanut butter, chocolate with peanut butter, bananas with peanut butter, bread with peanut butter, Nutella (oh yeah) with peanut butter- it's all good! In fact... I think I'll get me some now and enjoy my being at home finally! :)

Addendum: I read up on MRSA infections...
“Staph infection has long been a concern in hospitals, where there are several patients to a room,” [Mobashery] said. “In the last 10 years, it has also emerged as a concern in prisons and hospitals.” Mobashery considers the community onset of staph infections, outside of institutions, a troubling phenomena. “Staph is very common,” he said. “Twenty-five percent of us have it on our skin or in our body cavities at any time. If you shake hands with eight people, two will have it.” During the 1940s and ‘50s, 90 percent of staph infections could be successfully treated with antibiotics. “Because of increasing antibiotic resistance, that figure is now down to 30 or 40 percent and it continues to decline,” Mobashery said.
From www.nd.edu




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