Sunday, January 6, 2008

Our little (or actually quite big) scare...

So...Thursday night I am driving home from work and I called Joe, as usual, to tell him I was on my way home. Quite suddenly in the background, I could hear Scarlett crying and coughing at the same time (not a pleasant noise for anyone to make, let alone a baby). Scarlett never cries at random (in fact - she never cries at all) - so it was pretty evident something was seriously wrong. Joe thought she was choking on something, hung up the phone, and proceeded to do baby Heimlich per my frantic instructions. So here I am - stuck in horrific traffic 45 minutes from home thinking my 7 month old was choking and waiting desperately for Joe to call me back. Talk about feeling helpless! I just wanted to get out of the car and start running home.

He called me back, but nothing had changed. She had actually gotten quite worse. The cough had subsided, but her nose was running, she was drooling and crying, and her face started to swell a lot. I told Joe to grab one of our neighbors to see if they would go with him to the emergency room. We're only 5 minutes from the hospital. I was still about 20 minutes away when Joe called back and said that Scarlett seemed to be getting better. Her face was still very swollen, but the crying had stopped and she just seemed very tired. We decided we would wait until I got home and all go to the hospital together.

I finally got home and saw my poor little girl. Her face was so swollen that it looked like someone had slapped her across the face about 20 times in a row. She was very happy to see me and seemed to have perked up a bit when I got home. We called her pediatrician to see what she suggested. The "on-call" responder said it was quite probable that Scarlett had swallowed something which caused her to choke and cry, which resulted in a swollen face. She assured us she didn't think it was an allergic reaction (which was our first thought). She said to monitor Scarlett, but not go to the hospital. I called the next day to get a second opinion, and boy, had she been wrong.

Scarlett's true pediatrician believes she had an anaphylactic attack because she is severely allergic to something - which is very rare in babies so young. It turns out her attack was quite serious and we were instructed to call 911 the very second we thought it might be happening again. Problem is - we don't know what it could be that she is allergic to. Scarlett didn't have anything new to eat and she was just playing on the same floor where she has been playing for the last 3 months...and I had just vacuumed. Scarlett has been scheduled for an emergency allergens test with a specialist in Orange, so we'll keep you all posted. But boy...that was some scary stuff. Keep her in your prayers!