Monday, April 23, 2012

The Swarm

It's 5.30am and I can hear the sound of Smidge breathing behind me as I type. But she's not laying at home in her her cot, surrounded by musical chimes and soft toys, she's lying in her prison cot, in PHDU.

I remember passing the signs for this ward after Smidge was dicharged from NICU.
A little puzzled, I'd looked up at the sign swinging from the ceiling and thought 'P.H.D.U? What does that stand for?'

The realisation washing over me bought a small surge of worry, rounded off with a quick shudder at the thought of Smidge needing care like that now as a 'grown up' baby.

'Not all preemies get sick after discharge' I reassured myself, before turning my attention to more trivial thoughts.

So why are we now here then?

I like to tell myself that it's the unfortunate combination of an over protective G.P mixed with a too young children's doctor and a theatrical registrar who wanted to look to 'take the reigns'

Regular readers will know that Smidge is no stranger to the resuss area at the local A&E. Not because they rescusitate her regularly but because theres never any space anywhere else in the hospital and it's always better to have the equipment at the ready 'just in case,' isn't it?

However, yesterday's 'just in case' turned out to be, well...not so terribly misplaced it seems, as Smidge embraced many of the bedside offerings, in the way of wall unit faciities and trolly tray treatments.

The intial trip to the out of hours doctor was, as always, a precautuionary measure, and the consequental referal on to A&E, 'border line necessary' …..

Thirty minutes later we were happily chatting away to the triage nurse at A&E, when a SHO doctor popped up out of nowhere and whipped us in to rescuss before we even had a chance to ask where we were going.

They pulled out the sats probe and hooked her up to the monitors, Smidge's little heart was racing ten to the dozen, impressively exceeding 200 beats per minute with bradicardia.

Overwhelmed and tired, she quickly became dazed and confused  as she scarilly babbled mindless gibberish. The doctor checked her body for rashes before ordering a chest xray, to be carried out there and then in rescuss.

Eagerlly waiting for the reassurance talk, I mentally deposited the doctor in to the 'crap with parents box'  before gingerlly asking 'So are you worried then?'

After a hesitant start she began to say that she was a little worried in as much that she would be worried about any child with a heart rate that high, and a temperature of 40 degrees but if she was seriously worried then we would know, because she would be putting a cannulla in.

Not feeling very reassured, I briefly left the room to make some quick calls and arrangements for Mister G who was playing at a friends house.

When I re-entered the room minutes later, another doctor was in the room and wait, another nurse.

'Get the ECG leads on now please' she ordered.

'Paul, start up the fluids'

Meanwhile the other doctor began examining Smidge's tiny hands for undamaged veins, whilst another guy in red scrubs entered the room saying 'You need some help in here?'

One-day Hubby is holding onto Smidge, now wafting oxygen in her face and broad range anti biotics are the topic of dicussion.

Mummy-bot sits on the side lines looking on.

Mummy-bot is quiet knowing that they need to do their jobs.

Mummy-bot doesn't cry or get upset though because she has to be alert.

No time for foolish tears at a time such as now. What if they miss something? Make a mistake?

'It's because she's hot and distressed' I tell myself 'The drugs will work soon and she'll be fine, this is a massive over reaction, they just don't know Smidge'

'Once she is more stable we will be moving her to high dependancy' The doctor said.

'More Stable? High Dependancy?' - The ugliest sentence I have ever heard.

'Oh... are you sure that's necessary, I mean, I'm sure she just needs a little longer for the drugs to work and then she'll be fine'

' Of course, but I'd rather over monitor her than under monitor if you catch my drift?'

'Of course, and er...have you any idea when her usual consultant is going to be in?' (if you catch mine)

'Possibly tomorrow'


Because right now I could do with a very large dose of Smidge's extremely relaxed, highly experienced Paediatric consultant, who would never put those four words in to the same sentence.

Mummy-bot or not.

Disclaimer: All references to the medical professionals mentioned in this post are only intended as sanity saving measure and should not be considered a true representation of their dedication or professionalism.


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