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WORRIED--when would you take your toddler in for IV fluids?

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 
Dd has been very ill since Wednesday. I've talked to two peds on the phone and they say it sounds like a bad virus--chest cough, stuffed up nose, high fever for several days straight, vomiting about twice a day (today just once). I am terrified that she's becoming dehydrated. She hasn't had a bite of solid food since Thursday morning. Each day she's puked up a lot of breastmilk, although not all. Today she nursed a lot, and vomited once. And sipped about one ounce of Pedialyte.

This is my worry: She's showing signs of "severe" dehydration, like listlessness, inability to wake, dry lips. But these could also simply be symptoms of a fever. I hate the thought of taking her into a hospital if I can treat this myself. When would you take your child in? What should my final markers be?
post #2 of 10
Oh I feel for you! DS just got over two days of vomiting - even breastmilk wouldn't stay down.

My ped. told me not to check his lips, but to see if his tongue and inside of his mouth was dry. Also, how many wet diapers has she had? If none, you should really consider taking her in. But it sounds like if she's at least keeping down some milk (and electrolytes), she shouldn't be dehydrated...
post #3 of 10
We did take our dd in for IV fluid after she refused to nurse, kept asking for water and then threw it all up immediately after each sip We knew when she was not wanting to nurse that she was really very sick! I think she'd been sick - vomiting mostly - for about 3 days before we went to the hospital.

I second the wet diaper check and also just go by your gut. Frankly, from your description, I would lean towards taking her in. Hmmm, okay, I just reread your post and it sounds like she must have got fluids today as she only vomited once.....

Is she looking "moist"? Is the inside of her mouth dry or normal? What about her eyes? Has she cried at all? And did she produce tears?

I'm totally changing my mind and now think that you're probably okay to ride it out at home - IF she is having wet diapers and looking moist. Can you call your dr and use him/her as a sounding board? Maybe make an appt and decide from there what your next step will be?

Hugs to you and your babe. It's so awful when they're sick.
post #4 of 10
I'd say take her in and have her checked. If she is not dehydrated, ask lots of questions so you'll know in the future.
It might help for keeping fluids down if you just give a few sips at a time. I know that's tough for breastmilk, but it will make things a lot easier on her digestion.
post #5 of 10
Serena,

I feel for you. My son has been sick since Friday - vomitting and diarrhea. If she is listless, then I would take her in. Better safe than sorry.

I know of many children in the NYC area with this virus. In fact, my husband and I have it as well.

Let us know how it goes,
Laura
post #6 of 10
I'm sorry to hear your baby is sick. I also recommend looking at how wet her diapers are but from what you explained I would definately take her to the hospital. Even if she is not dehydrated, the symptoms of being lethargic and/or difficult to wake are extremely concerning. I am an er nurse and I see alot of kids in the hospital that don't need to be there. Yours does not sound like that. I hope you can get her on the mend soon!
post #7 of 10
When I was concerned about dehydration recently (barfy flu...), the nurse I called gave me these criteria: less than 1 wet diaper in 6 hours, crying without tears, listless or lethargic = worry. Of course, I worried anyway, but it was good to have that info...
post #8 of 10
Thread Starter 
Thanks, guys. I actually ended up taking her in at 1:00 AM . She vomited a lot at dinnertime, then refused to nurse or drink Pedialyte thereafter. At around midnight, she started gagging and gasping in her sleep. That was it. We took a cab to the ER and it was much better than I expected. We didn't have to wait at all, and the staff was gentle and friendly. The IV was so traumatic going in, for me and her both, but then it was all uphill from there. The fluids made a HUGE difference, it was almost miraculous. In just an hour, the color came back into her cheeks, her eyes cleared, and when we got home (4:30 AM! I am SO tired!) she slept deeply with easy breathing.

I hope she's on the mend now. It's so damn scary having a sick baby.
post #9 of 10
b'h

that could be pretty scary. last june, just before dd turned 2, we visited my family in ny...where everyone was giving her all sorts of junk - candy etc that she's not used to. she got a stomach virus...vomitting, diarrhea etc...wouldn't eat or drink.

pediatrician said to give her pedialyte, which we did (which today we wouldn't - would give her Smart Water, water with electrolytes, without all the other junk that's in pedialyte)...finally, dh and i took her in to ER at midnight.

after waiting a few hrs in the waiting room, she was finally admitted...we lied and said she was up to date on her shots, to avoid any confrontation which would make things longer....

ER doctor wanted to do a cathetar and chest x-ray, to rule out pnemonia and stuff. we told him - we're her parents, we know her, all she needs is an IV. we had to sign all sorts of papers that we were going against advice of a doctor...

but thank g-d she was fine. al she really needed was the IV.

and the ER dr had the nerve to tell us, "in medical school i was taught not to trust what parents say about their kids because they don't really know their kids..." huh??????????????????

my parents and in-laws don't know about this. they'd flip that we ddin't do what the dr said.

hope things turn out well with dd.
post #10 of 10
I'm so glad your dd is doing better.
Breastmilk is better than pedialyte--much.
Breastmilk is easily-digested. It leaves the stomach rapidly. My dd had a nasty bug (dh and I had it, too), and breastmilk was the first thing she kept down.
Try room-temp water, not cold. And pedialyte tastes like crap and is very sweet, so I can't imagine it'd do anything but induce vomiting! We tried it, too, and I'd never use it again.

Breastmilk keeps electrolytes balanced--think of little babies who eat and drink nothing else.

But I'd have taken her for an iv, too. Sometimes iv fluids are the only way to keep anything inside.

BTW, a decent, all-natural sports drink is Recharge, although I'd probably avoid anything sweet if the kiddo is vomiting. It's mostly white grape juice.
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