Connor gave us the scare of a lifetime today. **let me just say, everyone is FINE now**
We had been playing outside. Today was the last day of school, it was a half day as well, so we came home and filled up the kiddie pool. Connor is not a water baby. He would rather take a bucket and dump all the water out of the pool and that's okay. He was in the pool for maybe five minutes, went down the slide a few times and then wanted a snack.
He's sitting there, eating chex mix in his lawn chair when all of the sudden he grabs his neck with his head cocked to the side and just starts bawling while screaming ''it hurts! it hurts!". So I immediately think he had to have gotten stung by a bee. But I look all over his neck, no bite, no scratch, no redness. I start asking him questions: Does it hurt on your skin or inside, like your bones? He says '' I don't know but it hurts". His head was really bent over, so I tried tilting his neck to the other side...bad idea. He started screaming louder.
Let me interrupt myself here by saying that on Sunday, Connor had a fever of 103, goopy green eyes and needed his inhaler...virtually out of nowhere. He was wheezing, coughing and burning up. I treated him with motrin/tylenol, gave him his inhaler and he calmed down. Monday I took him to the doctor and he was put on an oral steriod for his cough, as it was caused by his wheezing from his Asthma. So on Wednesday morning he was checked again and he sounded much much better. Doctor said to finish up the 5 day course of steriods to be on the safe side but that he was doing great.
So when today he is clutching his neck and screaming, my first thought was ''Oh shit, meningitis". I immediately yelled at everyone to strip off their swimsuits, go inside, go potty and get dressed as quickly as possible. It was 4:02 at this point and our health clinic on post closes at 4:30. I did not want to have to take him to the Emergency Room downtown. So I called the nurse at the clinic and she was hesitant ''The doctor is confident that Connor was doing better yesterday, maybe he pulled his neck playing outside, give him Motrin and rest''. I said ''No''. The way his neck was bent, I just knew something wasn't right. I said I could be there in 10 minutes, she said to bring him in. I left my house at 4:06 and was at the clinic by 4:13...I live about 12-15 minutes away but drove like an Italian and cut that time in half. To make a really long story shorter, it wasn't meningitis.
It took two doctors but they finally said ''We think it's an acute dystonic reaction to his oral steroid medication." They were honest as they weren't sure. Neither doctor had ever heard of anyone having such a reaction after an oral steroid (only after anti-psychotic drugs or anti-nausea drugs) but since the treatment for this dystonic reaction is a high dose of Benadryl, we really had no reason not to try. If it was what they thought it was he would be better in 15 minutes or less. If it wasn't, then we would have to go to the ER for x-rays. So Connor got a big ol' shot of Benadryl.
10 minutes passed and he was still refusing to move his head and the crying was now worse from the shot.
20 minutes passed and Connor (who had been crying because of his shot) had snot running down his face. He immediately sat up and said ''I need a tissue'' and when doing so, had straightened out his neck. For over an hour; his neck was so bent that his left ear was touching his left shoulder and he would not stop crying. Luckily after this one shot and a full 30 minutes later, he was back to normal. We do have to give him Benadryl around the clock for the first 24 hours, just to make sure it doesn't reoccur before the prednisone works it's way out of his system. And he's done taking that. His lungs still sounded clear today so it's not an issue that he didn't take the entire treatment.
I was trying to stay calm, cool and collected but I was freaking out! Seeing him and knowing that he couldn't control his own neck, seeing how scared he was, made it really hard. Luckily Ron was able to meet me at the clinic and watch the other kiddos and I was able to devout my full attention to Connor.
Once home, he changed into his superhero pajamas and was back to fighting crime. He's still pretty slow moving, still pretty moody but he's okay, he's home and while it might happen again, we know that it is more annoying than dangerous. (I'll be honest, I did NOT ask what would have happened had I not brought him straight to the clinic). I think I lost five years off of my life today, but he had it worse.