Kicked out of ped. clinic & hospital experience... - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 26 Old 01-10-2007, 01:51 AM - Thread Starter
 
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DD has been in the hospital since Sat. and we just got back this afternoon....and do I have stuff to share.

DD is almost 11 months old and has never been sick until now (unless you count a clear runny nose for a couple of days when the outside temp. changes as "sick", but I don't). On Fri. DD had a mod. fever (102.3 maybe?) and was lethargic/fussy so we took her to her ped. clininc We are new to the area so it was only the 2nd time we had been to this clinic. The first was for a 9 month WBV at which that ped gave us 10 mins. of her time, so we asked to see a different ped this time. Same thing. He must have spent 10 mins with us and wouldn't let me get a single word in. Anyway, he took a quick look in her ears & said she had mild ear infections bilaterally and a slightly red sore throat & prescribed augmentin. He did a throat swab for strep but it came back neg. I asked him if antibiotics really helped with ear infections, or if it was more just to soothe momma (as I had thought I had read). He said if the ear infection is bacterial, than yes, they help. Then I asked him (as a test really) if he ever heard of garlic oil as a remedy. He mumbled something about home remedies and not trusting that silly stuff. Well okee then. So much for that. I cancelled my 12 month WBV I had made earlier and called that day and scheduled it at an entirely different ped office.

I resolved to try the garlic oil first (I'm a FTM and have never had to deal with this stuff before) and also a "wait and see approach", since many ear infections can clear up on their own without treatment, and she wasn't showing signs of pain or anything. Just acting "worn out". So I put the oil in her ears. She kept declining the rest of the day -- her temp. was increasing, and when it went to 103.5 around 4pm, I panicked and went and got the Augmentin. I gave it to to her at 4pm, & at 10pm along with Tylenol. Her temp went down t0 around 101. When I went to give it to her the next morning (Saturday) she threw it up immediately. I had to give it to her 3 times. Later she also threw up Tylenol three times. An hour after that she threw up twice on her own without prompt. I wasn't sure if she was having a neg. reaction to the Augementin (which is very hard on the GI system) or if she was ill or what, so I called the new clinic I had made the WBV appt. with and asked to see the dr. for a sick visit, which they do on Sat. mornings.

So my first time at this clinic was for this sick visit.... I met the doctor and we discussed everything. She looked in DD's ears and said she showed no signs of ear infections (was it the one-time application of garlic oil, or was our ped a nitwit?) but said she did have terrible blisters all in her throat. Then she asked the Big Question: was DD up to date on her immunizations? I said "no". She said "Which ones has she had?" I said "None of them". She looked at Dh and me in utter horror, like we were aliens, then with disgust.

They took some blood, and she comes back later with the results and tells us "You have a very, very sick child." My heart sank. She said "Her white cell count is 22,000. That means she has a bacterial infection of some sort. She has cackling in her left lung lobe which indicated she has pneumonia. Her hemoglobin is 10 and her hematocrit is 33 so she is also very anemic. I am sending her to the hospital immediately. They will do an x-ray of her chest to confirm the pneumonia. If by some chance it is clear, then they will have to do a spinal tap b/c there will be a good chance she has meningitis. I hope this makes you rethink your stance on vaccinations, because the infection she has was most likely caused by something that could have been prevented by a vaccine. I looked at her blankly and said "no, it has not", at which point she became totally irate and told us DD could not be a patient at her clinic. Whatever, lady.

So we take her quickly to the hospital to the ped unit. The admissions lady asked us The Big Question about the immuniz. She did NOT give us a hard time. Later, the hosp. ped. asked us the Big Question. She also did NOT give us a hard time. She listened to her chest and immediately said a chest x-ray was not indicated, b/c she heard no problems in her lungs. She felt her soft spot and said she had no signs of meningitis so a spinal tap would not be necessary. She said she was NOT "severely anemic", that she was actually on the low end of normal, and about up to par with a BF baby her age. She did a urinalysis, tested for influenza, and RSV, all which came back negative. She put her on IV fluids only. DD continued to have a moderate fever over the next 4 days with vomiting, and as of yesterday, all of a sudden has severe nasal congestion. They never could figure out what exactly was wrong except that it was "some kind of virus" ......Today,the fever broke, and she was able to eat 50% of what she would normally eat, so they let us come home.

She still has a poor appetite, I think mainly b/c she can't breathe while she sucks (we still BF), and she's not interested in solids again. But her fever is gone, and her vomiting is gone, so that's a huge relief. We are all totally exhausted. I think it will be another week before DD is 100%.

The hospital ped did not comment on the clinic ped's misdiagnonses, but did tell me what the doctor did about refusing us as future patients was unethical (which I agree with) was "against AAP policy to treat all children regardless of their vaccination status". I'm not so sure this is correct; all I've seen is a form they've (the AAP) developed that peds can use where parents sign and acknowledge the "potential risks" of not vaccinating. But is it really their policy that they should indeed keep these patients regardless if they want to or not? Somehow I think doctors are allowed their comfort level and choice, as ridiculous as it is to me personally......

Anyway...we are without a ped for a follow-up visit and I'm blue about that : .....But very grateful DD is feeling better. What a draining week.
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#2 of 26 Old 01-10-2007, 01:56 AM
 
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what is a "FTM"?
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#3 of 26 Old 01-10-2007, 02:03 AM - Thread Starter
 
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First Time Mom - they don't use that here?
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#4 of 26 Old 01-10-2007, 02:28 AM
 
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Ugh, mama! What a tough 1st illness!

Yes, if you would have only gotten your dd that "random stomach bug" vaccine, you wouldn't have had to go thru all that and put all of humanity in danger as well! :

Sounds like you really kept your head.
Hope you can find someone who will work with you and not try to bully you.
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#5 of 26 Old 01-10-2007, 02:33 AM
 
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UGH!! What a rude doctor!! I would soo want to call her and tell her off and that she totally misdiagnosed everything. ugh. just ugh!
I hope she gets better quickly!
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#6 of 26 Old 01-10-2007, 04:45 AM
 
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wow!! what a rough time you all have had! Big hugs all around!

Though I know it would be difficult on some levels, I second a pp in calling the previous doc to let them know of the results...ans she is doing well - no thanks to them. also - you could always call the ER doc and ask her for a referral. wonder if they'd give one...
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#7 of 26 Old 01-10-2007, 06:05 AM
 
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What a horrible experience. I'm so glad your dd is getting better and at least the hospital had competent staff.

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#8 of 26 Old 01-10-2007, 10:31 AM
 
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Good for you for questioning,because if your had not your little one would have gone through all that testing that smug ped demanded.
While I would not want to return to the clinic I think letting the ped know how absolutely wrong she was in her dx would be worthwhile.
Glad your child is recovering well.

BTW you should get a copy of medical records from the peds and the hospital.That ped may have put in the file that you refused treatment for your child,and put them in danger by doing that and by not vaccinating. You would want that ammended.
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#9 of 26 Old 01-10-2007, 10:50 AM
 
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Good job.

The uninformed professionals are such a drain.

We are in such a cookie cutter system, they forget to THINK.

But it is nice to have them IF it iS menengitis, eh?

What really cracks me up is when all the VACCINATED medical personell won't come near MY unvaccinated KID.

I die laughing!!!

They tell me to give my kids the shots they don't even trust to keep themselves safe.
CRAZY

and a good laugh,

glad baby is fine
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#10 of 26 Old 01-10-2007, 11:02 AM
 
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I'd send the clinic doc the bill for the ER. Seriously. Along with a lengthy note about how she totally misdiagnosed your child and what she did boardered on malpractice. Then I would write a letter to the licensing board.
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#11 of 26 Old 01-10-2007, 11:17 AM
 
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to you for being a super mom. And I hope you lo recovers quickly.

I am just sick about what that ped did to you and sick about doctors in general. That first doctor was going to torture your child with a spinal tab and she was going to subject your child to a chest x-ray all just to teach YOU a lessen.

Is that a doctor who loves children or someone who is so into self righteousness that they would do anything to sell their bags of tricks?

I think you have learned a thing or two here. Two doctors, two completely different opinions. That's all it is most of the time: opinions. Even when they do blood tests, listen with stethoscopes, look at ears and throats, it still boils down to opinions.

An non-vaccinated child with a fever and fussiness really doesn't need a doctor. He needs to be nursed and held. That's it.

All the medicine did was make him sick and then he had to deal with the virus AND the medicine. It took him much longer to get over everything because of the interference in how his body was handling the sickness.

This is my opinion. I raised three kids and none ever had abx their whole life until they went to college. Tylenol - I never would have thought of it. Back then I don't think we even had baby Tylenol??? We never had it in the house.
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#12 of 26 Old 01-10-2007, 11:24 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks for the support, y'all. Just to clarify, I do feel she needed to be hospitalized and put on the IV fluids. She was very dehydrated. So being sent there WAS appro[riate, just not for ridiculous reasons the clinic doc gave.
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#13 of 26 Old 01-10-2007, 11:29 AM
 
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I'd send the clinic doc the bill for the ER. Seriously. Along with a lengthy note about how she totally misdiagnosed your child and what she did boardered on malpractice. Then I would write a letter to the licensing board.
ITA.

I'm so sorry for what you've been through.
When My oldest DD was about 8-9 months old, she went through a similar bout of fever and vomiting. I just figured it was a stomach bug - I tried to keep her as hydrated as possible and we rode it out a a few days, and then she was better.

It's always disconcerting when your babe has a fever - but contrary to what docs would like you to believe, fever has a purpose. "Treating" a fever (a terrible misnomer, IMO) usually prolongs illness, b/c you are suppressing the body's built-in mechanism for fighting illness. The thing with my kids is, they always get terribly dehydrated QUICKLY when they spike a good temp. I have to be careful to stay on top of that.

I hope everyone is feeling better really soon, mama. If I were you, I'd find a good family practitioner and leave the peds in the dust.

Every baptized Christian is, or should be, someone with an actual (disturbing) experience, ... a close encounter, with God; someone who, as a result, becomes a disturbing presence to others. - Fr. Anthony J. Gittins, A Presence That Disturbs
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#14 of 26 Old 01-10-2007, 11:32 AM
 
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Yeah, when my son was in the hospital for FOOD POISONING they refused to say it was that even though every other test came out fine. They also would not let him go into the hospital playroom during the day because of his vaccination status. We were allowed to go in after hours but had to leave the toys out so they coudl cleant hem afterwards. It was so silly.

They did not question our decision not to vacc but some of the nurses did wear masks around him!
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#15 of 26 Old 01-10-2007, 11:36 AM
 
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I've got to say, my first thought is, wow, you handled that with amazing presence of mind. I would still struggle with a situation like that, the confrontational, arrogant doctor, and I've had a couple more years of practice at this parenting thing. Sorry you had to deal with a person such as that, though. The Finding Your Tribe board often has good suggestions for local docs, the kids go to a family practitioner who is well-regarded on my local board. Good luck finding someone better--wait, that wouldn't be hard. Good luck finding a really good doctor.
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#16 of 26 Old 01-10-2007, 12:00 PM - Thread Starter
 
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It's always disconcerting when your babe has a fever - but contrary to what docs would like you to believe, fever has a purpose. "Treating" a fever (a terrible misnomer, IMO) usually prolongs illness, b/c you are suppressing the body's built-in mechanism for fighting illness.
Well ITA with that. Which is exactly I've never treated a fever under 103 (to the disapproval of my family). But when she hit 103.5, I got panicked b/c it had risen to that so quickly, and my comfort level at that point was to treat her fever. She was quite miserable.
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#17 of 26 Old 01-10-2007, 01:43 PM
 
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You did great!! I'm not sure I could've held my ground as well as you did, and I've been a mom for 13 years! So very glad your baby is doing better!
As for finding a new Dr., maybe ask for a recommendation from a local health food store? Sometimes they know of a few who are more non-vax friendly and actually use some bedside manner--and brains, for that matter.
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#18 of 26 Old 01-11-2007, 01:29 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Just checking back in and I wanted to say -- you may not realize it, but taking the time and effort to type those simple words "you did a good job mama" (and similar hugs, etc.) really do touch a person and affect them positively. I think few of us have any anti-vax support outside of this forum (I know I don't), so these words are emotionally lifesaving.....

I am grateful for all of you....
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#19 of 26 Old 01-11-2007, 02:19 AM
 
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Forget looking for a ped. Look into a family practice doc instead. We've always used a family practice doctor and never had an issue with the vax stuff. The peds up here are idiots about it, though.

You did great and you followed your instincts. Good job!

Jenn
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#20 of 26 Old 01-11-2007, 02:37 AM
 
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I agree with everyone else - you did a great job standing up for your dd and your rights as a parent. Way to go, mama!

And also agree with the pp who suggested looking for a family dr. That's what we have, and from what I've heard they are generally more accepting of patients who don't vax because their livelihood doesn't rely on it. Maybe try posting in the tribal area to see if someone in your area can PM you a recommendation.
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#21 of 26 Old 01-11-2007, 02:41 AM
 
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edited
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#22 of 26 Old 01-11-2007, 04:06 AM
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Ugh. I agree you should write that ped a letter spelling out exactly how WRONG she was and how unethical it was of her to try to scare you into doing all those unnecessary tests on your child just because she didn't approve of you exercising your parental rights to not vaccinate. So many people are harmed or subjected to unnecessary distress because of medical error and arrogance. Maybe she'll just toss your letter in the trash, but if it makes her think for even a moment and exercise a bit more prudence and not be such a bully, you might spare some other child similar treatment.

What a great job you did in a tough situation!

On the fever subject, I know it's hard to not panic when it gets high. Have you read what Dr. Mendelssohn had to say about fevers in How To Raise A Healthy Child? There's also a very helpful section on the purpose and handling of fever in the book A Guide To Child Health by Michaela Glockler (umlaut on the "o") and Wolfgang Goebel. Keep in mind the tactic of using a tepid bath to bring a child's fever down a few notches, just enough so they can rest more comfortably. It often works, without short-circuiting the natural defenses or further stressing the body.

There is no secret ingredient.
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#23 of 26 Old 01-11-2007, 06:46 AM
 
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Bravo, Mama! That first year is tough and you're just getting your feet under you and trying your best to build your confidence as a mother, esp. when not vaxing. For you to have done so well under such circumstances gives others strength.

Imo, a letter to the doc will be a complete waste of your time. They, obviously, think they are superior to you from the way you were treated and they are not going to take any additional words from you seriously. A letter to the medical board might be in order. Even if nothing big comes of it, THAT may get this doctor to think twice before running off at the mouth next time.
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#24 of 26 Old 01-11-2007, 01:05 PM
 
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Originally Posted by knowerofnada View Post
First Time Mom - they don't use that here?
Thanks I don't know if they use it here...I haven't seen it.
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#25 of 26 Old 01-13-2007, 08:45 PM
 
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I actually had two doctors tell me that my son could no longer be a patient with them. The first one was when my son was about 15 months old and it was time for his MMR shot. Up until that point, he had been getting vaccinated all along while I kept reading more and more and more on the subject and began to question the whole vaccine issue. I refused the MMR shot and at that point the doctor told me that everything I had read was basically "NOT TRUE" and that all vaccines were perfectly safe. He then went on to tell me that my son needed the Varicella Vaccine, another one that I wanted to avoid altogether. I declined and so he said something about a vaccine for ear infections which I said I didn't want. Needless to say, he wasn't happy and told me that I should think about it and if my answer was still "no" that he would no longer be able to provide services to my son. When my son was 16 months old, I had a second child. Took both of them to a new doctor for checkups. As soon as I started to refuse the vaccinations, he said he could not treat my sons because that would be putting his other patients in danger.
This is when I realized that I had to stop being so honest. When I got to Doctor #3 and she asked about shots. I told her that my sons were up-to-date and that I would have to get the records from their previous doctors. I was able to "stall" on this for quite some time, each time forgetting to bring them. Finally when my second son was about a year old, I brought in the records that I had and told her the truth, that I wasn't going to vaccinate them any further. She wasn't happy about this and tried to talk me into it somewhat but she never really pressed the issue and allowed us to continue to come back.
Whenever I have had to take my sons' to the hospital for any reason and they ask if immunizations are up-to-date, I ALWAYS say "yes" and am never questioned any further.
I am just now going through hell at my sons school because he doesn't have the chicken pox vaccine and they won't let him attend for 2 weeks because of this but that's on a separate post.
I am so tired of feeling like I cannot make my own choices in the health and well-being of my children and it only seems to be getting worse.
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#26 of 26 Old 01-14-2007, 10:55 PM - Thread Starter
 
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For me personally, I wouldn't say "yes" to the up-to-date question, b/c I don't want them to rule out whatever is going on. Because of this, I think the religion card works better for us.
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