Thursday, February 2, 2012

Tonsillectomy Troubles

My 3.5 year old, Beckett, had his tonsils out last week. He had sleep apnea and could snore most grown men under the table.. So, off to the operating room we went. It was an uneventful surgery, he came out of anesthesia a little scared, but ok. His first night home, he woke up crying, shaking, and unable to swallow. Drool was everywhere, he was near hysterics! (As was his mother.) I finally got him calmed down, got him to swallow, take his meds and he slept. I was giving him Tylenol or Motrin whenever I could, and he was still having difficulty swallowing or drinking. The surgeons will tell you the best thing you can do is keep the throat moist.. "I don't care if he has 50 popsicles a day" is what we were told... NO PROBLEM! He loves popsicles, right?? He refused to eat any popsicles or jello. Needless to say, we spent days pushing (forcing) fluids, praying he would return to normal soon.

Thursday we finally called and got a prescription for Hydrocodone Elixir, a liquid narcotic. It helped, but evidently tasted terrible! The second dose I tried to give Beckett he threw it up instantly. I didn't even have time to get a "chaser" to his lips!! I tried mixing it with OJ the next day, and even then you could taste it.. Called the pharmacy and hung up getting no help.. UGH. Sometime that day, out of desperation, I tried Hershey's syrup.. THAT'S what made the medicine go down!! :) Just added enough to mix with the medicine and went down the best. PHEW! I was relieved.

We've had no bleeding (thank goodness!), but have experienced low grade temps, weight loss, voice changes, low energy, nausea, diarrhea, etc. This was MUCH harder than I anticipated. I would like to tell every parent to expect this.. I was assuming 2 quiet days and we'd be back at it! We are currently on day 9, and although things are looking up, we are still struggling with fluids, diet, medicine and sleep. I believe his scabs are beginning to fall off. I understand that he'll feel better sooooooon. (Fingers crossed)

A few tips I'd like to share:

  • Hershey Syrup mixer. Don't hesitate.
  • Stay AHEAD of the pain, even if they are feeling "OK"
  • Keep an informal log of medication. What and when, it's amazing what you forget!
  • We were told to stay away from dairy, but if it's all they'll drink, go for it!
  • Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate. A cool new water bottle or a funky straw did the trick!
  • Don't worry about solids, they'll catch up on calories when they feel better.
  • Encourage a nap, even if they don't take one anymore. They'll appreciate it. So will you!
  • Keep plenty of jello on hand. Don't be afraid to feed it to them yourself.
  • When giving any meds, don't underestimate the power of a syringe. You can "shoot" it in instead of fighting with a tiny cup.
  • Borrow a few "new" movies from friends!
  • If you haven't already, invest in a good thermometer. I love my Braun tympanic style.
  • Keep your doctor's number close, allow yourself plenty of rest, and be patient!

Best of luck!

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