Malachi was asleep and still breathing loudly when we arrived at the ER at the children’s hospital. He woke up when they took his vitals and again, we didn’t have to wait in a waiting room at all. We were brought to a treatment room and they set us up with more epinephrine masks..Honestly, I lost count of how many they did in all. They’d do a treatment, check his sats, consult with the Dr, and set up another. He was hovering in the low 90s.
Malachi hated the masks eventually but I guess he finally found them soothing because he started to settle and doze off for many of them. Unfortunately, his sats kept dropping when he slept, so for a while they added oxygen to the mix. The nurses also suctioned his nose, and sent samples for testing for RSV, and the most common strains of influenza (all of which came back negative.)
I would have thought that he’d find having his temperature taken (rectally) to be more uncomfortable than anything, but it turns out having nasal prongs was horrible for him. He cried and cried and cried. Even more than the 3 failed attempts at getting an IV in at the first hospital we were at. His cry was so weak. Eventually they had to do another epinephrine mask while the oxygen was still going and he finally dozed off for a while.
The doctors weren’t satisfied with the chest ray images from the first hospital we’d been at, so they did another one after Malachi’s oxygen sats improved enough to be taken off of the oxygen. This showed some inflammation in the lower lungs but it ruled out pneumonia.
By early evening, Malachi’s sats were still sitting around 93% despite having had so many breathing treatments, and they decided to admit him. I’d been texting my cousin all day as things had progressed, and she let her parents know what was going on. My aunt and uncle live only about 10 minutes from the hospital, and before long I received a text from my aunt asking what I needed; she was putting together a care package for me.
She arrived with snacks, some yarn and knitting needles, and some spare clothes around the same time as the Dr who was doing his admission assessment. We finally were upstairs in a room late in the evening, around 9pm I think. Our first night, it took him a while to settle but he finally slept and even slept better there that he does at home.
Really, the rest of the stay was fairly uneventful. His breathing slowly improved and he became more active and playful. There was talk of the possibility of needing an IV or nasogastric feeding tube if he couldn’t nurse enough, but thankfully that didn’t become necessary.
We were in isolation so we couldn’t wander the halls or go to the play room but the staff there was great, and brought him toys.
On Tuesday morning, we were freed! He’d passed the required 24 hours of needing no hospital interventions or treatment, and while he was still wheezing and crackly and breathing a bit hard, his sats had been steadily 96%-ish overnight. The Drs were satisfied that we could manage the rest of his virus at home, and we have been.
He’s still not completely better but each day his voice is a little closer to normal, he coughs a bit less, and his chest is a bit more clear. Hopefully he’ll be fully over this before too much longer!
Thanks again to everyone who has been keeping him in prayer!