Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Bad Bacteria

That's the simple explanation of what Ace has been diagnosed with: bad bacteria. The more complex and mildly disconcerting is that it is Clostridium Difficile Infection or more commonly referred to as C. Difficile or C. Diff.

What?! You didn't realize he was sick (aside from the party cancellation) ?! Yes, unfortunately this has been an on going issue since he woke in the middle of the night on July 23rd vomiting off and on for 90 minutes. He finally fell asleep around 5am and when he awoke the next morning while his diapers screamed 'flu' - his attitude was 100% happy. It was perplexing, but we were glad he seemed to feel ok. We figured the diapers would correct themselves in time, as they had the other times he's had a flu bug.

Tuesday the 27th rolls around... the day before we leave for Hawaii and he throws up one time in the afternoon after having nothing to eat in 6+ hours. Again his mood was fine, aside from the actual vomiting that he hates, he was 'fine'. I called the doctor anyway, that didn't seem normal to me, and we were leaving in the morning to go to Hawaii. Our doctor stated that it seemed like a routine bug, his diapers would take up to 10 days to right themselves.

Hawaii was a blast, his appetite was (not uncommonly) picky and minimal. He had pretty awful diapers once a day, every day we were there - but nothing excessive, and always he seemed fine. The flight home on Sunday, August 1st his diapers even improved (which was a blessing since he had those on the plane!)

Tuesday the 3rd he woke up and urpped on my shoulder. Then proceeded to eat a big breakfast and was happy the rest of the day. The diapers reverted back to extremely 'sick and flu' like. Hmm a tad unnerving but again his mood still was good. His appetite after breakfast on Tuesday thru Friday was pretty worrisome. He often is a bird eater, but the only thing I could for sure get this kid to eat was nuggets. Siigh. But still his mood was 'normal.'

Saturday the 7th - he woke sad. It was the first time in this entirely drawn out process that he didn't feel good in his behavior. Although even that eventually improved and he was pretty happy toward the end of the evening.

The 8th, 9th, and 10th - I was so encouraged! His appetite returned in full force (and then some!) and his diapers started to correct back to normal - albeit still not 100% healthy - but that takes time and we were trending in the right direction. He was happy, he was seemingly back to healthy - perhaps it was just a lengthy flu bug.

The night of the 10th he threw up again like the original time back on July 23rd. SOMETHING was not right. I waited an extra day (our pediatrician is only in the office Tuesday/Thursdays) and took him in. She was perplexed, not too worried and wanted to run some tests on his stool. The only 'abnormality' at that time was his bowels were 'racing' when she listened to them.

We returned the sample on Friday and on Monday evening the doctor called with the diagnosis: C. Difficile. Sadly I missed the call because I was ironically changing another poopy diaper. She left a detailed message and so it was nice to have the ability to replay that.

Today we will be picking up an antibiotic called Metronidazole that is being specially compounded for Ace. Compounding drugs is what they used to do pre-WWII all the time. It wasn't until after that they were mass produced and manufactured. It used to be patients had their drugs compounded for their specific needs/as they were needed. The reason Ace's drug has to be compounded is because they only 'sell' adult doses of the drug and they only sell it in pill form. This particular antibiotic (like many) can't simply be tossed in a pill cutter and given to the child or add some water to create a liquid. The Ph in the drug can be broken down and rendered ineffective. Therefore, the medication for Ace is being created from the root level and measuring out the correct milligrams into the the correct milliliters in order to create a liquid form of this medication. This process of course isn't automatically covered by insurance, but can be submitted and usually is reimbursed. Ace will have to take this antibiotic 4x a day for 10x and hopefully that will eradicate the C. Diff from his system.

I have been told by his doctor that we all have C. Diff in our system. It only becomes an issue when the good bacteria in our system is compromised. Often C. Diff takes over one's system ironically after the individual has recently been on an antibiotic. As far as where Ace got it from or why his C. Diff decided to 'take over' is unclear.

Since I am pregnant they want to run the test on me as well to ensure that I also do not have it. Although I am not exhibiting the symptoms that come with it - so they don't believe I have it - but just to be safe for me and baby - best to double check. The only way to transfer C. Diff is fegal matter to mouth - so as long as we thoroughly wash our hands after poopy diapers all should be a-ok.

Please pray Ace responds well to this medication and that he doesn't have any allergic or adverse reactions to it. Hopefully he'll be feel like himself again by his birthday!


Anonymous said...

oo dear! well, at least they figured it out and you can all focus on getting rid of the sickness! poor kiddo!
i think that is the same drug I got when I had that post Peru bacteria crop up. It worked really really quickly, so hopefully it will for A too!

Lori said...

Praying for your little dude! (And for you!)