Wednesday, October 19, 2011

A NON-emergency ER visit

This was an unusually crazy weekend.  I guess it was not THAT bad, just different.  So to back up a little bit last week at the Learning Center Austin's little buddy walloped him in the eye with a frisbee and left a bruise under the eye and a little bitty cut on his eye lid.  Then Friday Dustin noticed he was rubbing his eye during the day, but didn't think much of it.  Friday afternoon I was supposed to pick up our friends' boys at the Learning Center and take them home until their parents picked them up after doing a really awesome permit only hike at Zion National Park.  The mom called and said I didn't need to pick them up after all because their youngest had swollen eyes from allergies, so she canceled the hike and took him to the doctor who said it was just allergies.

Now back to Saturday, we wake up and are hanging out for a bit.  Then before we ate breakfast I noticed Austin's right eye, same eye that was involved in above frisbee incident, watering and turning red.  Then upon closer evaluation noticed a big blob of puss in the corner.  His eye was totally looking like mine did about two years ago when I had pink eye.  We talked about our options over breakfast, and of course thought about the fact that his buddy had swollen eyes on Friday too, did I mention that is the same buddy that was responsible for the frisbee attack?  In our tiny, remote area there are no weekend clinics open for any type of health concern, so it was either call the optometrist's emergency number, drive 65+ miles to an urgent care clinic that was open, or go to our local emergency room at the hospital.  I call the ER and talked to the nurse and her comment was "well pink eye is not an emergency, but you can bring him in."  I was hesitant after her negative attitude, but I remember how miserable I was with it and didn't want Austin to suffer all weekend until we could get him in on Monday.  So we headed for the ER.

We thought that if they seemed overwhelmed and busy we would leave and try calling the optometrist, but when we got there it was totally dead.  They checked us in and took his vitals and then we waited, and waited, and waited.  They apparently don't have a doctor on site during the weekend, but just have someone on call.  Eventually a Nurse Practitioner came in and saw Austin and said she didn't necessarily think he got pink eye from the buddy, but rather was rubbing his eye because of the frisbee injuries and just had the grubby little germs on his hands and put them in his eye.  She gave us a prescription for antibiotic drops so we ran to the pharmacy which closed at noon and filled it just in time.  Literally the pharmacist shut off the lights as I was signing for the prescription at the check out stand.

In hindsight, no pun intended, I am so happy we went ahead and took  him in when we did.  The drops worked very well and even though his eye was worse after his afternoon nap, totally swelled shut, it responded after that and cleared up pretty well throughout Sunday-Monday morning.  As you may recall I stay home on Mondays with Austin for a Mommy-Son bonding day so we went to the park and played, and he was on the grumpy side, but I figured the eye discomfort probably effected his sleep.  Then we went home and he took a nap and when he woke from that sure enough his left eye was watery and starting to turn red and swell.  I started the drops in that eye immediately.

I looked up the pink eye policy at the Learning Center and it said either a doctor's note, or visibly clear eyes to return to school so we decided that I would stay home on Tuesday with him and take him to the actual Optometrist.  We went for that yesterday morning and the Optometrist was fabulous with Austin.  He even convinced him to rest his head in the microscope thing to get a better look.  He said to continue on with the drops and stay home from school the rest of the day, but could return today.

That afternoon I got a call from the buddies Mom saying that her oldest son's eye was swelling and turning red, so she was going to take him to Optometrist.  So turns out the younger brother did in fact have pink eye and not allergies, which if I was them would be happy about because the doctor said he was probably allergic to grass which would be a total drag.  All in all Austin recovered fairly quickly from it, so it wasn't that big of a deal after all, but I am still glad that we took him in even though it was not an emergency.

1 comment:

  1. I'm glad Austin is feeling better. I've had pink eye twice and it does suck! Luckily, I don't think either kids have had it yet. Kind of nice that you got an extra day off though :)


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