Thursday, January 28, 2010

feeling helpless

I feel so bad for my little guy. Jordan was diagnosed with an ear infection (after his ear drum ruptured) a couple of weeks ago and went on amoxicillin. Six days later, his ear drum ruptured again and they upped it to augmentin. And after 10 days of that, when he was rechecked yesterday, he had infection now in both his ears and is moving on to omnicef.

But on top of that, we are dealing with pretty severe eczema too. I spent the last hour and a half reading on the internet, trying to find a magical cure. Right now, the kid gets what I call spa treatments...frequent baths, Cetaphil, hydrocortisone, Aquaphor or sometimes Eucerin. It's a lot of work and it just seems to rein in the symptoms a bit, not ever heal it up completely.

This morning I put Jordan down with a few toys and took a 5 minute shower. When I came out of the shower, he was screaming and covered in blood--his forehead, eyelids, hand. He scratched himself so badly from the persistent itching that he bled. (He's almost always scratched and cut up, but this was extreme). Thankfully, my mom was coming over this morning and happened to arrive when I was in the midst of cleaning him up and helped to calm both of us down.

The doctor who saw him yesterday for his ears (not our normal pediatrician because she was on vacation) was worried that he might get these scratches and cuts infected if we are not careful. And it looks so much worse today. So we are back to wearing socks on his hands I guess. The doctors always assume that the scratching occurs mainly at night, but really it is continual. If I take off his clothes, he claws at his legs and stomach. He rubs his head on his carseat or chair. He has scratches all through his hair and covering his face.

I have a lot of theories about possible triggers of the eczema flare-ups. When we were in California, he cleared up almost completely for about a day until he got a little overheated on a sunny car ride. So obviously heat and sweating can trigger it. The fact that he cleared up that much initially while in a pet-free home really makes me believe that our cats are part of the problem too.

(That's a whole 'nother post, but does anyone want a cat? Or two??? We are looking for a good home for them because of this and might have limited time before my dad kidnaps them and drops them off at the pound. kidding. kind of.)

We also suspect that he might have a sensitivity or allergy to dust because of a couple of times that he flared up badly when he was in a dusty house. We keep him out of the basement completely now because it is dustier than the rest of the house and it is the cats' home base. Also, Matt is allergic to dust and allergies can be hereditary.

And as I was reading tonight, I read some stuff that indicated that perhaps a breastfeeding mother's diet could affect this as well. I didn't read this everywhere, but the places I did mentioned dairy, eggs, wheat, fish, and nuts as being possible triggers. I'm trying to imagine what I would eat if I didn't have dairy or wheat or eggs, but I guess people deal with that every day and I would definitely give them up if it would help Jordan.

So I'm not sure to go with this. Should I be trying to get him referred to a pediatric dermatologist or allergist? Or drastically changing my diet? Or ridding our house of pets and cleaning and dusting constantly?

Hoping someone out there reading this might have some ideas for me...please comment if you have any experience in dealing with this!! Thank you! (did anyone actually read that to the end??)

(picture from a couple of weeks ago...think it looked worse today)


Dana said...

I would look into the allergist - that way you can find out if it is diet or environmental related. The allergist can likely help you with the symptoms as well as the cause, where a dermotologist would just look at the symptoms. I will pray for answers - I can see that it is very frustrating and sad for you.

Jessica Lyn Luebbe said...

Poor little guy!! (and worried mom!) I think as extreme as that is and if it wasn't getting better I'd just ease my mind and take him to a dermatoligist or allergist, or both. At least an allergist could maybe test what he's allergic to?? So sorry!! That can't be fun for any of you!

Rachel Hill said...

Thank you guys! I'll definitely be inquring about referrals at our 6 month appt. in a couple of weeks!

Holly said...

Poor little baby boy. Noah had skin issues, but nothing like your little guy. I would deffinately ask for a referral at your next apt. I'm sure this is making you go crazy and be very worried. Will say prayers for him...and yes I did read your post all the way to the end.

Jamie said...

so sorry rachel, that's no fun! I have no other advice than what you've already received! I hope that a "cure" can be found quickly to ease your mind as well as Jordan's! We love you!

Rachel Hill said...

ironically, Jordan is really cleared up right now...must be the prayers. thanks!