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O/T - DW has me very frustrated today

Rhinodad's picture

So, our BS3 has had a bad cough since January that just seems to linger. We kept taking him to his normal doctor's office, seeing different doctors there and it was always something different and no one could give us an answer or make the cough go away. We finally switched doctors and the one we saw immediately sent BS3 to an allergist.

So, I take Bs3 to the allergist and through allergy testing that show he's not allergic to anything, really. So no answer there, but the allergist does an exam and seems that his sinuses are completely closed so the only place the snot is draining is down his throat, causing him to cough. Allergist tells me to give him a 30-day course of stronger antibiotics (3, 10-day courses), nasal spray once daily and a steroid - he suspects chronic sinusitis. We make an appointment for two weeks later to check up on him.

Then I have to go out of town for work for over a week, so DW has to take him to the next allergist appt. She does and we talk about it, she says that the allergist says to finish up the 2nd course of antibiotics (at day 20), to stop the steroid and nasal spray and start giving zyrtec every night. I was a little shocked and told DW at that time that he originally told me that BS3 should take the whole 30 days of antiobiotics, but she swears he told her to stop at 20 so he would be off it at the next appointment. Ok, so we stop everything except the zyrtec (which admittedly, we've both forgotten a few times).

So, fast forward to today, the next appointment. I again take Bs3 to the doctor. He asks "Is he still taking the nasal spray?" I say no, my wife said you told us to stop. "Is he still taking the antibiotics?" No, you told my wife to stop at day 20. "Are you giving the zyrtec?" Yes, but we've forgotten a few times.

He proceeds to tell me that he told DW only to stop the steroid. The antibiotic was to go through day 30 - when he said finish it up, he meant all 30 days. (We had to renew for each 10 day increment). He also never told her to stop the nasal spray. He said to me "If you aren't going to follow my directions, BS3 is not going to get better."

So, I was embarrassed, and sort of angry with DW as she had gotten pretty much everything incorrect about what the doctor had said. Maybe it was a misunderstanding between her and the doctor, but I definitely felt blind-sided, especially after I asked her specifically about the anti-biotics. They hand-wrote out directions in clear english and handed them to me before I left. It was a pretty insulting trip to the doctor's office.

I called DW at work (probably a bad idea) and told her that the doctor had told me basically the exact opposite of what she had told me happened at the last appointment. She argued that it was my fault, I told her the course of antibiotics was 20 days (untrue) and that when he said to stop she thought he meant everything. So I told her in no uncertain terms that I was embarrassed and that this could have been avoided if she had just confirmed exactly what the doctor wanted. She said she had to go, she needed to do something.

Calls me back and starts telling me what a jerk I am for yelling at her while she was at work(not once did I yell), that it is my fault really because she didn't know how long of a course the antibiotics were (it says right on the damn bottle!). I told her she was the one being the jerk, to put herself in my shoes, and that I never raised my voice to her, although she is taking it that way because she feels attacked because I basically told her it was her fault. I'm not a yeller but this time I raised my voice because I was defending myself... and she hangs up on me

In retrospect, I should have just waited to talk to her about it until after work, that was my fault. However I am pissed at the implication that this is somehow my fault - it is hers or the doctor's, I wasn't even there! Maybe there was a misunderstanding between her and the doctor but how embarrassed/pissed would she have been in the same situation. And god forbid it was the same situation with SD7 in place of BS3 - I'd be sleeping on the couch for a month.

The lesson I got out of this was to wait until after work to discuss an issue like this. I also feel like now I have to be the one to take BS3 to his appointments to make sure we get everything right... though I know that is not the case, just me being angry.


herewegoagain's picture

oh my, a 3yr old with so many antibiotics? what kind of allergy tests were done? many doctors will state a kid is not ALLERGIC to anything, but if you look at the tests, they might have a sensitivity to something…just in case, stop giving him MILK, cheese, ice cream, etc. and see if that works…sorry, I went through something similar and most doctor's don't know their heads from their ass…we took milk away and all it's derivatives and my son never again had to be taken to a doctor for such crap.

PS I also learned that sometimes we are married to people who are not as smart as we are and just aren't good at interpreting doctor crap or asking the right questions…maybe you'll have to do it from now on

Rhinodad's picture

It was a 30-day course just to rule out any long-running bacterial infection.

Tests came back negative, we tried the no dairy thing for a week (wife's idea), and it did nothing.

They did skin prick testing on his back... he did not love that (neither did I trying to keep him still). They tested for 35 different things.

herewegoagain's picture

You can get a blood test done that it much better than that skin thing…it tests for many more things. To give a kid antibiotics for 30 days and then find out he never did have a bacterial infection, to me and most descent doctors, would be outrageous. They should've tested for a bacterial infection before the antibiotics. If he didn't have a bacterial infection, those antibiotics did nothing but mess up his system even more.

fakemommy's picture

Really, this sounds like the doctor's issues. Everything should be given in writing, not just verbally. All our doctors give a specific plan for each appointment so there is no confusion. I would have gone home with a sheet that said something like, "Finish 30 days of antibiotic, continue Zyrtec, discontinue steroid". Then later it would list exactly which medications should be given and how long. The doctor was irresponsible by not giving it to your wife in writing to begin with, and I'm sure realized his mistake and that's why he responded the way he did, and why he wrote it down this time.

I know having a sick kid is stressful, but playing the blame game will not help.

fakemommy's picture

I'd also question whether asthma is a possibility. That was my first thought when you described the symptoms.

Rhinodad's picture

My brother had bad asthma growing up - he spent most of his first three years of his life in the hospital because of it. That was my first concern.

BS3 has always had clear lungs, no wheezing, none of the classical "asthma" signs. I think there is something called cough-variant asthma, but the allergist didn't think that was the case.

Rhinodad's picture

I think it was probably a little of both. I found out later that it had been written down and given to DW, but god knows what happened to that paper. She does remember getting something though. It's possible it only said "Finish antibiotic" though.

I'm agree playing the blame game won't help, but at the same time I was pretty angry at being called out while I was there. Probably didn't help to call DW immediately after the appointment.

Rhinodad's picture

Ha... well as I was posting this I figured someone would make a comment like yours.

Yeah, my bad for calling while angry. I should have counted to 10 or something.

not2sureimsaneanymore's picture

Sometimes a persistent cough could actually be a habit that occurred after a long illness. I had it happen to me, and so did my mom. I had the flu that it lasted about 3 weeks. After for some reason I ended up developing the eheh eheh cough it as a habit. I started taking cough drops and after a week of no coughing, it just disappeared. I don't think a 3 year old can be trusted with a hard candy though...

You could try an acupuncturist... sometimes they help with weird persistent, unable to diagnose diseases. But only if nothing else shows up.

fakemommy's picture

This is so true. This is what happens with my DH and skid. I've never thought about it this way though!

Rhinodad's picture

The problem is that it is not just a little, dry cough. It is a deep phlegmy cough that sometimes makes him vomit because he coughs so hard he gags.

My concern is that maybe it is something environmental (as in, in our house), or that he has something in his lungs that he accidentally swallowed.

not2sureimsaneanymore's picture

Did he get an MRI or at the very least, a chest x-ray? He could have walking pneumonia.

Rhinodad's picture

We mentioned that to pediatrician and allergist, they both said it is very very unlikely as he doesn't present the symptoms - no flu-like symptoms, no tiredness, no headache, no sore throat, etc.

At the next appt I may have to be a little more forceful about getting an xray or MRI though.

not2sureimsaneanymore's picture

Be forceful about it. I don't want to scare you but my sister had walking pneumonia--I had pneumonia and was admitted to the hospital, the doctors decided to check my younger sister just in case, even though she was her normal hyperactive self, running around, playing, laughing. Turns out she had an even more severe case than me and was immediately admitted. She had just a mild fever, no tiredness, nothing, but her lungs were in a terrible way.

moeilijk's picture

Yeah, I'd be angry and frustrated too. And feeling guilty for not taking proper care of BS, even though I couldn't because I didn't have the right information.

In the future I guess I'd be calling the doctor's office to confirm everything if DW takes him in again. It's great she can take him when you can't, but if she's not able to remember/report stuff accurately, then I'd take the pressure off of her and just double-check myself.

Unless she wants to be more responsible herself and write it down or ask the doc to do it for her. That would be better. But I'm sure this is not the first time you've seen this quality in her, so mostly likely you know how it will go.

Rhinodad's picture

Actually this IS the first time I've seen this - I was pretty shocked.

I thought about calling the doctor myself but I don't want to have to babysit or "check up on" my DW. I think from now on I'll probably just take BS myself.

moeilijk's picture

Well, then you probably owe each other an apology. Everyone makes mistakes, she probably overreacted because she felt guilty about her mistake in this situation being so serious. (So another mistake, lol.)

I understand not wanting to check up on DW. But on the other hand, if I felt unsure, I'd want to be reassured direct from the horse's mouth, so to speak.

AllySkoo's picture

I agree that this actually sounds like the doctor's fault - and it's entirely possible that that IS what he told her. Honestly, I think I'd find a new doc.

I'm no pediatrician, but I have asthma and I've been put on steroids for it. That shit can f*** you up, no joke. I'd be more than a little alarmed at putting a 3 year old on it for a month just to see if it worked. For what it's worth, I've had to do a steroid cream (just a cream, mind you!) for a week for my (then)4 year old and the pediatrician specifically told me not to use it for more than that week since steroids aren't good for toddlers. (Also, nasal sprays dry you out, which makes you produce more mucus, which makes you need more nasal spray. I've never heard of a doctor prescribing one for more than a week.) Honestly, I'd call his pediatrician and run the meds by him, see if he thinks its reasonable or if you should get a second opinion. (Or third, I suppose, if the pediatrician is the second!)

Rhinodad's picture

Steroids were only for a week - built up to a certain amount and then tapered off. Antibiotics were what was for a month.

Rhinodad's picture

We thought maybe it was a long dose too, but he's had doses of 15 days before as well. Also, brother is a physician assistant and says that is typical for a child with a chronic bacterial infection. This is at least the 10th doctor we've seen about this (several were in the same practice). We seem to be getting nowhere, and it is very frustrating. Zyrtec has been prescribed by ever single one - not for its antihistamine properties but moreso because it dries them out.

We are hesitant to continually give medicine to our 3-year old on a daily basis. But we are not really sure what else to do at this point.

We were told to give the antibiotic with food... not specifically yogurt.

herewegoagain's picture

That might be typical for a kid with a bacterial infection, but the kiddo didn't even have a bacterial infection. So why is this doctor prescribing things to see if they work, especially such powerful medications as antibiotics are no joke. A good doctor will ENSURE and test that it is indeed a bacterial infection before giving such medications.

Find a regular doctor that ALSO does natural medicine. In Texas we had an excellent doctor, Daniel Chartrand…he was a regular doctor, but he tried EVERYTHING he could that was natural before giving our son antibiotics. 9 times out of 10, the natural stuff worked and eventually my son got better and after years of battling with doctors and allergists and everything else, he hardly ever gets sick or asthma or anything else.

fakemommy's picture

If he won't eat yogurt, there is a powder you can buy with the bacteria in it, you just mix it with juice or food.