Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Benson's hospital visits #3 and #4 (note: I counted birth as hospital visit #1)

It seems that every post lately is about Benson being sick... well, it seems that our entire LIFE lately is about Benson being sick, so it's only appropriate, I guess. Here's the latest:

Benson started coughing Friday morning. We had planned for some time, to go to Maggie Valley to see the snow this past weekend. We packed up and headed up on Friday night. Saturday morning, he still had his yucky sounding cough, but he seemed happy and cheerful. All day long fell the most beautiful snow. We enjoyed getting to watch the flakes and play Nerts all day with Benjamin's family. And with the exception of the two minutes we went out to take this picture, we were snug as a bug inside all day.

Saturday night, Benson's cough worsened and he did not sleep a wink. Every time he would doze off, his poor cough would wake him up. At 6:00 Sunday morning, he started breathing really fast and started running a temperature of 101.7 We called our pediatrician and asked what to do, and they said to find a doctor's office in order to let them listen to his lungs. We found an urgent care that was open and they checked him concluding that he had an ear infection. So they gave us some amoxicillin and cough drops and sent us home.

Benson took a nap and woke up breathing even faster than before. His respirations were 80 breaths per minutes and normal is between 30-40. He was practically panting, as if he couldn't catch his breath. He had a temperature of 101.9. We called the pediatrician again and they said that 80bpm was very dangerous and we needed to get to an emergency room.

We packed our bags and headed to the hospital in Maggie Valley. As soon as we were in the car, Benson fell asleep. His respirations dropped to 60bpm. Since he was content and the Maggie Valley hospital was very very small, we decided to continue driving toward home and find a better hospital. We made it as far as Spartanburg and Benson woke up, his respirations reaching 80bpm again along with a wheezing sound. We decided to stop at the Spartanburg Emergency room. (Hospital visit #3)

We ran in and they assessed him, sending us directly to a room. They performed a chest x-ray and gave him a breathing treatment. His lungs were clear so they determined it was not pneumonia or bronchitis. After the breathing treatment, they sent us home.

We had a relatively good night and woke up in the morning only to find Benson breathing at 80bpm again and running a fever of more than 100. We called our pediatrician and they told us to come ready to stay the night.

We packed up and headed to the doctors office. Our doctor listed to Benson's breathing and was furious that the Spartanburg hospital had discharged us. He decided to admit us immediately. Since Richland hospital was full, we ended up being sent to Baptist Hospital. Upon arrival, they tested Benson for RSV (Respiratory Syncytial Virus) which came back positive. They have put him on antibiotics and steroids by IV.

They tried to put the IV in his arm, but they couldn't find a vein, (last time we were in the hospital, they had to stick him five times in order to get the IV in) so they put the IV in his head. I have never seen anything like it. It took me by complete surprise and really upset me when they walked in with his IV sticking out of his head, but they reassured us that they did this all the time. (The baby next door has the same thing) As it turns out, it is much better to have the IV in his head because it is out of sight, out of mind and he doesn't even really seem to know it's there. He has his hands free to roll and play, and so it has really turned out well.

Currently, they are concerned that his Oxygen levels are too low and they have tried to put an oxygen tube on his nose, but he refuses to wear it. They are considering putting a little tent over his crib and pumping the oxygen into that... I think that would be less invasive and more comfortable for him.

Please pray that his little body will be able to fight this off... There really isn't anything they can do... the virus has to run its course... there are very thick, stringy, mucousy secretions in his lungs that are making it difficult for him to breathe through his nose and mouth. Please ask the Lord to give both us and him strength to get through this time. We appreciate your prayers.

Kisses for Grannie

Loving aunt Ash

They've got us under quarantine. All the doctors and nurses have to wear masks and gloves to enter. I find this interesting since RSV in adults presents itself as simply a runny nose. I think it's just that they don't want to take the risk of spreading RSV to the other babies on the hall.

Granddaddy came to visit on his way to work.

Playing in his exersaucer.

As a side note, we have checked his diaper for blood and it is completely clear, so we have confirmation that he is indeed milk AND soy protein intolerant and as long as I stay away from milk and soy, we can continue breastfeeding. The doctors continue to encourage us that even though it is difficult, this is the best thing. With as sensitive as his stomach is, there is no telling whether or not he would be able to stomach even the Neocate, so we are so thankful for being able to continue breastfeeding. Not to mention it would cost up to $1,000 a month to put him on it. Not many mamas get practically PAID to breastfeed. I consider it a blessing and honor to be able to do so. Between cloth diapering and breastfeeding, Benson is practically free! Haha, well, except for a bazillion dollars in medical bills!! :) The Lord has and will provide! Thank you, Lord!


  1. Ryan and I will pray for all of you! From our much shorter in comparison hosptital stay, I know how hard it can be. It's very unnerving not to be able to do anything to help. I hope you will be heading home with a healthy baby boy very soon!

  2. Jessie you might want to take into consideration of going to the mountains. I don't know the sea level at Maggie Valley, but I do know the higher you go the less oxygen there in and in decent the faster you decend the more pressure it puts on the lungs, ears, and oxygen level in the blood. Perhaps he will outgrow his problem soon as I know this is a delight for the entire family.