Just the other day I was thinking back over some of the medical expenses we've had this year and thought, "Well, with all of that behind us, surely we are done with the drama for this year."
How wrong could I be?
Sunday afternoon we were just browsing around a sporting goods store looking at a bike for Rachel, roller blades for Stuart and Nicholas, and a helmet for me. Nicholas was looking at a big piece of exercise equipment next to us. He was curious about how it worked. So of course, he pulled one of the handle bars down. Rachel screamed and then we all realized that her little thumb was crushed as the bar had rotated down. Nicholas pulled it back as soon as he realized what had happened. Rachel's thumb was really bad looking. Some of the skin was peeled back and it was instantly swollen. I was so worried that it was broken, especially since she couldn't move it.
Since it was Sunday our pediatrician's office was closed but we were just minutes from Acute Kids Urgent Care.
Rachel was in pain and very scared so she was crying just about the whole time we were there. The doctor and nurse was very patient with her and did their best to try to calm her down. However, Rachel did not want to get an x-ray so we did have to hold her hand down to get it which made her really, really mad.
Fortunately, there were no broken bones. The skin is ripped and the tissue underneath is macerated enough from the crush that they can't do a reliable job with stitches. So we have to keep it extra clean to prevent infection while the skin grows back and the tissue underneath heals.
In order to keep the thumb immobilized to help the tissue heal, the doctor recommended putting a little splint on her hand. I'm sure it is a little uncomfortable for Rachel but she does like the cool pink ace bandage that they wrapped around it. The doctor even gave her a pink popsicle once they were all done.
I am really grateful for Acute Kids Urgent Care. We were seen right away and everyone was great with Rachel. They took the x-rays and were quick to have a radiologist review them and get an answer to us in right away. I have no idea how much this will cost us because they will send the bill later. We haven't met our deductible yet so it will be costly no matter what but I'm sure it has to be cheaper than an ER visit. Right?
As far as follow up care, they recommended that we have her checked by her pediatrician the next day in case there was more swelling or any other concerns that might be more apparent by then.
At home, Rachel has been fine. We've given her Motrin to help with pain and she hasn't complained a bit about it hurting. And she is amazing talented at still getting into everything one handed!
Monday morning we followed up with our pediatrician. He said that he didn't see any new concerns but gave us a prescription for a strong antibiotic ointment and then he redressed the wound. I got a picture of her little thumb before it got covered up again. It is still swollen and bruised and very painful looking. There is a little flap of skin that is covering a lot of the wound. The doctor told us that it might not really heal and instead might just shrivel up. So it is extra important to keep this area clean because we might have to wait for new skin to grow in. Poor baby!
After all of the drama yesterday, I was glad to be done with the follow up appointment this morning. However, little did I know that Rachel still had a little more drama to come.
Last night the four of us were sitting at the kitchen table eating dinner. Rachel mubbled something to me in her quiet voice and I thought for sure I had misunderstood her. I asked her to repeat what she had said. She said, "Mommy, can you get this french fry out of my nose?"
We had her tilt her head back and sure enough we could see a piece of french fry lodged in her nose.
When did she do that? We were all sitting her together talking over dinner and somehow the three of us missed seeing the 2 year old put a french fry up her nose?
And why did she do that? Oh yeah, she's two!
The fry was too far up for us to just pull it out. We thought a bulb suction might help to suck it out. Unfortunately that was not a good idea because as we inserted it in her nose it actually ended up pushing the fry farther up her nose to where we could almost no longer see it. Now there was no way that we were going to pull it out.
Maybe we can just squirt some saline up her nose to help push it out the other side and into her throat. She could swallow it or spit it out and all will be well. But what if it does come out back there and she starts choking on it? Or what if it doesn't come out and ends up causing an infection?
I called the pediatrician's office to get their recommendation. They said that we should not squirt saline up her nose because the fry could cause her to aspirate. They do not have the small extraction tools needed to pull the fry out so they suggested we take her to an urgent care clinic that night. She asked if we knew where to find an urgent care clinic?
Um, unfortunately yes. Yes we do.
I explained to Rachel that we had to go to the doctor's office to get the french fry removed from her nose. She seemed ok with that. But as soon as we parked in front of Acute Kids Urgent Care, Rachel got squirmy and whiney.
"That's not the doctor's office we are going to, right? We're just going over there to that other place?" as she pointed to one of the other shops next to the urgent care.
She was not happy about returning here and I wasn't either, especially since I still have no idea what this place costs! But you got to do what you got to do.
Once we were settled in the examination room, Rachel calmed down. She told me all about the mural on the wall behind her.
The doctor came in and tried to remove the fry with some tweezers. Yes, tweezers! I could have done that! Well, except for the fact that we needed multiple people there to hold her head still, keep her arms secured, and her body still.
The tweezers pulled out little tiny mushy pieces of fry but the fry was too mushy to be able to pull much of it out.
Plan B - We again held her down while a nurse shot saline up one side of the nose which ended up pushing the piece of fry out the other side of the nose.
Weren't we told to NOT shoot saline up her nose?
Oh well, the fry is out and Rachel got another popsicle for being so brave.
I hope we are done with medical traumas for a while!