Wednesday, November 6, 2013

...And a Third Trip to the Doctor In a Week... Scratch That, a FOURTH Trip in Ten Days

Calliope's fever didn't get better on Thursday.

And Friday, she woke up crying at 5:30 am with a fever of 105. 105!

Yikes. My eyes almost popped out of my head. I knew it wasn't really dangerous, but it sure freaked me out.

I gave her some Motrin and put her back to bed, but was totally incapable of falling back to sleep myself with thoughts of that scary fever in my head.

Showing considerable restraint, I didn't text the doctor until 6:30 am. She eventually responded, after 8, saying to wait another 24 hours unless Calliope started showing any signs of difficulty breathing.

I called in sick, and resigned myself to another day at home. But once the Motrin kicked in, she was pretty cheerful. And Eleanor arrived early that day, and Calliope was so pleased to see her.

So I went with the girls and the babysitter to Tot Shabbat. Which was a hoot. I've been wanting to go for ages, but of course, I'm always at work.

The girls had a great time and afterwards, since it was raining out, they burned off some steam by running up and down the aisles and between the seats of the pews. Very, very cute.

Calliope seemed fine until the Motrin wore off, except that she refused to eat anything. In fact, she'd hadn't been eating much at all since her fever the previous weekend, but now she wanted nothing except a couple of ounces of milk here or there. After the nap, with the Motrin not working well, she was a mess.

She was up bright and early the next morning, once again with a fever, but only 101.5. I debated if I was being crazy to bring her to the doctor -- I didn't pick someone convenient, but rather, someone I really respect -- or crazy to consider not bringing her to the doctor.

Off we went. And I'm so glad I did. Because she had a raging ear infection. The doctor said that if the fever had been from the flu vaccine, it would've only lasted 24-36 hours, maximum. So the fever had been due to the cold she had had the previous weekend, which circled back around and descended into her ears. The flu vaccine was unrelated to her illness. Phew! Because I'd been feeling very guilty, indeed, for giving it to her. (I had given it to her myself, at home, or it would have been four doctor visits in one week.) Still, this was a good reminder not to practice medicine on my own child. The potential consequences are just too big, and my brain doesn't work well when I'm too close.

I was even more that afternoon, when her fever spiked over 103 that afternoon, and I still couldn't get her to eat anything, and only took a few sips of water. She lay limply in my lap, wailing. Tears and snot coursing down her face.

I called the doctor back but he wasn't concerned.  Said I just had to wait for the antibiotics to kick in.

Her temperature was back up this morning, to 104.3, even with Motrin in her system, and I was getting increasingly worried that I'd be missing work once again tomorrow -- he'd said to come back if the fever lasted 48 hours.

But thank goodness, the fever broke this afternoon! And she slept longer than she had in a week. Woke up in yet another foul mood.... but armed with a ziploc baggie with one square of dark chocolate (her choice), she didn't fight me tonight in taking the antibiotics. Phew! I had my downstairs neighbor ready to hold down her hands, but thank god it wasn't necessary.

... And now, four days after I wrote the first part of this post, I'd like to add that there was a fourth visit to the doctor. On Monday, as I was putting Calliope's pajamas on, I noticed a bumpy rash all over her chest, back, and neck, and extending up her neck and onto her face.

I was sure it was a penicillin reaction at first, but after texting my pediatrician (how can I ever leave this practice where I have her cell phone number? even if she's so geographically undesirable???) and talking to my medical director, plus consulting Dr. Google, I realized it might be a viral rash.

I took Calliope to our FOURTH doctor visit in ten days early the next morning.

Yes, it was a "viral exanthem" -- a random rash that a baby or toddler gets as part of a virus. The pediatrician had tentatively given Calliope a diagnosis of roseola once before, though maybe that was wrong and this was the real case. Or maybe, as the pediatrician said, she got it twice. (I have my doubts about that.) But the high fever that goes along with roseola (and which disappears right before the rash makes its appearance) also made sense with her ear infection. So I may never be able to tease the symptoms apart.

So in summary, that's: one round of wheezing (with a tight sounding cough for several days), one ear infection, one viral rash, one flu vaccine, and two rounds of fever (for a total of six feverish days) in the past ten days.

Plus the aforementioned four visits to the doctor (which doesn't include the flu vaccine which she got at home).

I'm hoping for a few healthy weeks, at least. I fear that if another cold comes along, her lungs will not be up for the challenge. She's still got a deep productive cough that isn't all that frequent but still sounds pretty unpleasant when it happens.

The patient. On doctor visit three of four. Looking pretty cheerful
despite ear infection, fever, and those puffy eyes.
"Talking" to Grammy on the play phone at the office.


  1. Poor Calliope! Glad to her she is finally feeling a little better!

  2. Ugh, what a bummer. Poor girl. That is a really high fever - I'd be terrified. I'm glad she seems to be emerging from it, nd ahope the antibiotics do their job. (Carys goes back to doc in morning, I think she has ANOTHER ear infection, 8 months after her last set of tubes. It never ends....

  3. What an ordeal for you both! Wishing her a speedy recovery.

  4. What a time! Hope she's on the mend now & doing well. 105 fever would have scared me to death!!

  5. Big YUCK. I hope Calliope is feeling better soon!

  6. That's just crazy! You must have mommy nerves of steel. I could never handle a string of days like this! Hope all is much, much better now!

  7. Poor girl! I hope she's truly on the mend and that Mommy gets a break, too!