L.B. asks from Alexandria, VA on February 27, 2009
Baby with Laryngitis
This started over a month ago and I just feel like I should be able to do more for him, but maybe I can't... That is what I am trying to figure out.
So I took both my oldest(5)and my youngest(3 months) to the doctor for a "well child check up" on Friday the 6th. The doctor listened to my older boys chest and checked his ears and all the regular stuff and then with my three month old she weighed, measured, and gave shots. It didn't really sink in that she didn't check his ears, throat or breathing untill I got home. He had a little cough but I had totally spaced talking to her about it- however from the begining I assumed she would bring it up if it seemed to be an issue since it was a "well child check". Needless to say the cough got worse through the weekend and he went silent- he would cry and nothing came out. I took him back to the doctor on the following Monday. He was diagnosed with a little croup and baby laryngitis- given an oral steroid. Within 3 days he was able to talk and cry again (not totally, but better) then within 10 days his croup was worse (but no laryngitis) It got so bad that he started to refuse to eat. He was miserable. We went straight to the doctor and he was given the same oral steroid, an antibiotic for a small ear infection and a nebulizer with two meds (one levalbuteral and the other a steroid). He started feeling better immediatly, but within two days of the meds he had laryngitis again. It has been over a week now that he has had the laryngitis and over a month with the cough.
I have tried calling my pediatrician, but can not seem to get a return call(I have been debating changing pediatricians already) When I go in it takes at least an hour to be seen and I have to take all three kids with me. So I am wondering if the laryngitis is going to go away on its own or should he have more meds. He is still on the antibiotic and the nebulizer treatments.
Sorry about the rambling, just don't know what to do. To be seen by a different doctor I either have to change my PCP or go to the ER for insurance to pay. We are not in need of an ER visit, however over an hour wait at the doctors with three kids doesn't seem appealling at this point either.
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So What Happened?™
Little Sam is finally starting to feel better- We had anouther Dr Apt and he is still on nebulizer treatments, but feeling much better... He also has his voice back, yeah we can hear him scream again :)
N.W. answers from Washington DC on March 14, 2009
Don't worry about the rambling, you're concerned about your baby.I understand you don't want to wait at the doc.t's off. but it's been over a month and no call back is unacceptable.If he's not getting any better it's time to seek another alternative. Yes it's a headache to change pcp,but you can't allow him to be uncomfortable any longer. Think about if it was you. Good Luck hope he's well soon.
Don't you love when more symptoms arise after you come from the doctor.
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D.Z. answers from Washington DC on February 28, 2009
I would advise you to make an appointment to see the doctor, and try to make it for early in the morning- to be one of the first,and so maybe not so long a wait (tell the receptionist your concern of waiting so long, maybe they know a trick or two that will help...
At the same time, look into a new doctor and make a list of who fits you and your insurance. I use Pediatric Associates of Alexandria. I've liked them in the past, though now the turnover has been such that I don't know half the doctors and won't vouch for them (we aren't at the doctor's as often as in the past). Waiting in the waiting room has had more to do with the # sick than with the time of day. The WHOLE visit tends to last at least an hour, from signing in to paying out. If I have any concerns with one doctor's opinion, (or they have concerns with the way the child's progressing),they lasso in a more senior doctor for a second opinion within minutes. It's a whole array of doctors working there, If need be, you can be picky... there's another practice in Alexandria with an array of doctors that is something like; Alexandria Associates of Pediatrics... my friend's insurance covers them, so she goes there. Seriously, do what you can do to have a team of doctors you are comfortable with. Many of them will let you come and visit to see the place and answer questions in person. Doctors need to trust you to advocate for your child's lack of progress and keep it on record - or fight the repetitive procedure if it doesn't feel right. A good doctor will support a mother's input and rule out anything serious before trying more of the same... I am also thinking it's time for a specialist to look at him. The child's recent 1/3 of his life has been suffering. Don't wait for return calls, forget ER, that's for life threatening and my insurance won't pay if I go just for some virus, no matter how serious - check yours- and congratulations on your wonderful family!.
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M.S. answers from Washington DC on April 08, 2009
This is what I can advise from my own experience:
I have a baby boy who is 7.5 months old. He got croup/laryngitis when he was about 5 months old. It lasted about 4-5 days before it got a bit better, about 8-9 days for full recovery. He was also put on nebulizing med (albuterol), which we did for about 3-4 days as needed and when he showed signs of difficult breathing. What made the difference for us was steaming him in hot showers.
I would take a scolding hot water (I naturally LOVE hot water so it was no problem for me) and my husband would hold him in the bathroom as the mirrors were fogging up. Or we would just run hot water for about 10-15 min (water heater will of course eventually empty out) and stay with him in the bathroom holding him up, rocking him, singing to him, etc. We stayed with him in the bathroom like this 5-6 times each night for about 4-5 days. Those were nights from hell and we slept maybe 1 hour total, if that but that paid off nicely.
Definitely change a doctor. we also have had issues with our pediatrician. Because this is our first-time baby, we would always rush in at the sign of a little trouble. There were times when we made doctors visits every other day (seriously!) for about 4 weeks straight. We came to the conclusion that we learn nothing new with each subsequent visit, we get more frustrated, we get no answers and the baby is still sick, not getting better, etc. I learned to trust my own instincts to do logical parenting and consult books and blogs and that has been more helpful than doctors. Doctors frankly have the tendency to complicate things more than is necessary (emergencies aside, of course). Make sure your baby is well hydrated and gets plenty of rest. Check the fever, make sure baby is breathing well and if it is neither of the above, then stay home and take it easy with the baby and spare yourself another frustration at the doctor's office. After the frustration we went through, we have never looked back. Our son is as healthy as can be and I do not want to see another doctor (except mandated well checks, immunizations and emergency situations, of course) as long as we shall live. WE HATE DOCTORS! Instead of helping our son, ours was telling is 'to ride it out because babies get 10-12 colds a year and that's what we have to deal with' (direct quote).
For that 'advice', we paid $1,200 (well, our insurance did) each time we saw his pediatrician for 15-20 minutes.
Do yourself a favor and stay home with your baby. That's a better use of your time than hanging around doctors' offices.
R.S. answers from Denver on February 28, 2009
If you have any doubts in your dr's ability I would change drs immediately. Also I would ask for a referral to an Ear, Nose and Throat dr first or if you don't need a referral make an appt ASAP. Explaining the situation.
If a dr didn't call me back I would be more than a little upset.