"The Lord himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you.
   Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged.”
Deuteronomy 31:8

Friday, August 13, 2010

Luella's First Seizure (9.5 months old)

On Monday (August 9th) Luella woke up early from her nap. She was acting strange and kind of clingy. I was busy folding clothes in the living room. At one point she crawled over and stood by the chair and all of a sudden just started whimpering - I've never heard her do that before. I picked her up and she snuggled with me. It took me a few minutes to calm her down. Then she was fine and was playing with the kids. I turned my back for a second and she had stood up by the couch (which she does often) and she fell backwards (which she also does often). When I turned around she was on her back and kind of crying funny. I picked her up and she wouldn't really look at me and then I noticed her arms and legs were jerking. (I'm sure she fell because of the seizure, I was in the room and there was no hard thump.) I called Jim (this was around 3pm) and told him there was something wrong with Luella, then I realized I needed to get her to the hospital ASAP. I told Jim he needed to come home. I had planned on waiting for him to come home before taking her but after watching her more I decided to leave before he got home. I told the older three kids to stay put and wait for daddy and that I needed to take Luella to the hospital. I grabbed my purse and took off. I didn't take time to put her in the car seat, I just drove. I looked back as I was leaving the driveway and the kids were watching by the window in the living room.

When I ran into the ER there was nobody there. I was yelling and finally someone came. She told me to wait in the waiting room. I said I needed a doctor NOW! She let me back into the ER but there was still nobody around. It felt like forever but finally a nurse showed up and said, "What's going on here... oh.... OH! We need oxygen!" Luella was turning blue at that point. She had been breathing but not very well. She had a lot of saliva coming from her mouth. A couple of nurses were there at then and they moved us to a trauma room and then more nurses and a doctor finally got there. Luella was seizing this whole time. I really lost track of time, but by figuring out what time I called Jim and when the doctor saw Luella, they figured she had seized for 10 -15 minutes. The seizure did stop on it's own and then Luella was in a sleep-like state for awhile. When she woke up she was crying really hard. They told me she probably had a bad headache. They wanted to do a CT scan so they gave her some medicine to calm her. The doctor told us if we wanted her to go to Sioux Falls we could be transferred there. He recommended going there so we could see pediatric specialists. The doctor in Luverne spoke to the doctor in Sioux Falls and they recommended that we go there by helicopter. I really wanted to be with her but they said usually family can not ride. Once we heard that the helicopter was on its way they said that I would be able to go with her. We loaded up in the helicopter. Luella was awake and crying hard at this point. The short 10 minute ride to Sioux Falls calmed her a little bit and she was able to sleep again.

We got to Sanford Children's Hospital and they got her set up in her room. I was surprised to look up and see Heidi (my sister) walking in the room. She had been in Sioux Falls with a friend when she got the call from mom. She arrived at the hospital just as the helicopter was landing. I was really happy to have her there. It was great to have a nurse there, she knew all the right questions! It was quite awhile before Jim got there. He was home getting the kids ready and then took them to my Aunt Rosalie's before coming to the hospital.

Luella handled lots of pokes and prods. I had a little talk with a guy from the lab - Luella (and mommy) wasn't too happy with him! Other than that all the tests were fine. They did a CT scan, ultrasound of the kidneys, urine tests, blood tests and an EEG. They determined that she had a UTI (urinary tract infection) that triggered the seizure. They described the seizure as a febrile seizure which is usually related to a high temperature and normally kids with UTI's have a high temp. For some reason Luella didn't have the high temp though. I'll need to take her back to Sioux Falls for another test in a month to see if her urine is refluxing back to her kidneys, which could cause an infection. Other than that we just need to watch her closely. There is a 50% chance of her having another seizure. We are getting some medicine to give her if she should have another one - the pharmacy is having a hard time locating it, they hope to have it in tomorrow. I've been worried about her sleeping and not hearing if she has another seizure too. She was sleeping with a noise machine that we had set to white noise to help drowned out the kids when she slept. That was noisy for us listening to her though too. We could hear if she cried but that was it. So we decided to stop the noise machine so we can hear her better over the monitor. I can even hear her breathing now. And we got a video monitor so I can see her in the crib too. For awhile I'm sleeping in her room with her also.

We got home from the hospital Wednesday (yesterday) around 2:30. Luella was almost giddy as we walked in she just wanted to get down and GO. She got really tired of being hooked up to everything in the hospital. On Monday she mostly just slept and Tuesday she was still pretty groggy. By Wednesday she was ready to play. I was happy that Heidi could be there with us on Monday and she ended up staying through the night and Lance came to get her on Tuesday at noon. I basically held Luella the entire time at the hospital and my back was feeling it! On Tuesday night I tried having her sleep in the crib and she did pretty well.

I’m just so relieved to know she just had a UTI and nothing more serious. After seeing my baby hooked up to all the wires and IV I couldn’t help thinking I wonder how those parents with really sick kids handle all that. I can’t imagine having to have a child go through cancer or something, that would be so hard! We thank God for answering our prayers and keeping little Luella safe!!

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