What the RSV?

10:42:00 PM

This last week our world was shaken.

My youngest is 11 1/2 months. She is the happiest. Sweetest most smiley baby you will ever meet. Even if she is not feeling well...she smiles and scrunches up her nose for you. A week ago she started out with what seemed like normal teething symptoms. Coughing, runny nose, diaper rash. We thought no big deal, we can see a tooth under the surface. That night she had a temperature and again Just teeth. The next day her symptoms turned more cold like and the temperature was still there but now was 102. Advil and Tylenol were given and we still chocked it up to teething as no one else in our house even had a sniffle. That night she was burning up so I made sure I rocked her and kept her close more. I also noticed her appetite had changed and she wasn't interested in eating and was mainly comfort nursing ::{IE mama was a pacifier}:: By Saturday her temperature was still there and the symptoms were not improving. At that point, I knew she had a cold or virus of some sort. Sunday I couldn't take it any longer and made an after hours appointment to be seen.

The doctor wasn't our regular doctor. She listened to her chest for what seemed like forever. Checked her ears. Took her weight. All normal routine things. Then went and once again listened to her chest. It was so quiet in the room except for the crackly sounds coming from my baby that you could hear crickets. The doctor turned to me and said, "Your daughter has a virus called RSV. She has wheezing in her chest but the good thing is she looks good otherwise so should be on the upswing after today. The virus usually runs its course within 5-7 days so you are right at that point. You are very lucky, I hospitalized a baby this morning with it." I am sure I had the look of shock on my face. She asked if my other kids were sick? I said no. Not one of them is sick. She said RSV is unpreventable. Its passed through coughs, sneezes etc and lingers on surfaces for up to 6 hours from contact. She said it hits in kids ages 18 month and younger and most kids over the age of 2 have come in contact or had it at one point or another. But for some its very harmful. Apparently the most common cause of RSV for babies is school aged children. RSV in kids over the age of 2 and adults is a nasty cold. A thick, mucous-y, disgusting cold. Go figure, I stand in the school cafeteria daily with kids coughing all around me as I wait to pick up my first grader. She said "Bingo, that's most likely where she caught it."

I left thinking GOOD. We are on the mend from here on out. No worries. We got this. But thats just it. We didn't.

Livy's temperature stayed at 102 getting closer to 103 all night. She wasn't nursing anymore. She was literally a ball of fire when you held her. She melted her head into me. Her breathing all night was extremely fast. Paul and I were worried sick. But, we were just told that day we were on the upswing so we figured we would just sleep with her to have her close and keep watch over her. Monday morning Paul stayed home. I made an appointment and could not wait to get her into the office. She was going to see our normal pediatrician and he knows my kids very well.

Our doctor walked into the room and asked how she was doing. But had a look of concern on his face. He said "she's not smiling is she?" I said, nope. She is miserable and I am worried. More worried than I have ever been in 7 1/2 years. More worried than I was when we had the flu. He hooked her up to a pulse/ox machine that gives them a heart rate and also oxygen levels. A light is bounced off the nail bed through the blood stream and can detect how much oxygen is in her blood. He looked even more concerned. He said, she does have a double ear infection. But, her heart rate is high and her oxygen is low. I want you to take her straight to the children's hospital. My doctor who is the most easy going, don't stress guy told me to go to the hospital. I started to cry. He told me he was calling ahead and I left.

We were taken right in where they started the process of checking her vitals. They gave her some medications and she started to look better. We had 2 different doctors and a whole bunch of nurses that night. Each one coming in to do a different thing. 3 people to suction out her nose with this special machine that is awful and amazing all at the same time! They checked her ears again and said they were to the point of almost bursting so they immediately put numbing drops inside and ordered antibiotics. Because the treatment for Pnemonia is the same as they would do for the ears they decided they didn't want to put her through the radiation but thought from listening she had a mild case. She was mildy dehydrated but they weren't wanting to poke her right yet. However everything they were doing was already making her look better. She nursed in the hospital. She started signing again...of course it was "all done" each time a doc or nurse would walk in! They had to do a UTI test to be sure she didn't have a bacterial growth infection which can be deadly for the babies. If it came back positive we would be staying till it was normal. They had to insert a catheter to do the test. I wanted to cry. My poor girl had been through the ringer. Late that night we got great news that the test came back normal. But her oxygen levels were still low so they had to continue to monitor her and were counting breaths.

We learned that when babies have high fevers their bodies respond by taking shorter faster breaths. We also learned that because she has RSV we would most likely all get a nasty cold (understatement). We learned that this 3 letter virus is a bad word. A bad word I don't ever want to see a loved one experience. I also learned its best to listen to my gut feeling. Cause if I wouldn't have...we may have lost her. Normal heart rate for a baby is between 100-160. Hers was at 190.

We were finally able to go home and by the next day we already saw more improvements. We were told to have her sleep with us again to monitor her closely. But she had a night sweat. She was soaking wet and magic her fever broke! She is now suffering from the bronchiolitis that happened during the RSV (Their nasal passages are super small. When they get RSV it can cause a bronchiolitis. Which is basically super thick yuck that has a hard time passing through. This can build up and cause infections. They struggle to cough it out etc.)
In the span of a week we have been to the doctor a total of 5x. We have had 1 hospital visit but we have found the light at the end of the tunnel with Livy Joy. My 3 year old also came down with it and is now on antibiotics for the ear infection part and then myself too am on antibiotics to help kick it. Its awful. You feel like you licked a sidewalk. You don't want to move as you feel like her head might explode. I have basically lived on the couch and in my bed. Today I answered the door in PJ's, unshowered with a top knot of hair on my head. But we needed to eat and I ordered us a pizza! The Mr. has it and the big's started coughing much you wanna bet they too have it! 3 people on antibiotics at one time in one household has got to be a world record!

I had a moral to this blog post at the very beginning...but basically. I just want to say again...RSV sucks. If you have a baby under the age of 18 months. Do your research on it. It hits just as the flu season dies down. If you have a child in school with a hacking cough...I beg of you. Keep them home. You can help to prevent the spread. And in cases of babies it can be deadly. Trust your gut and do not hesitate to bug your pediatricians. Most have after hour numbers you can call. Use em'!!

I pray you all have a super blessed weekend. Ours will be watching movies and thanking God for the blessings we have. xoxoxo

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