M.S. asks from Ben Lomond, CA on May 16, 2008
My 10 Month Old Is on His Fourth Round of antibiotics...Is This Normal???
My 10 month old son is on his fourth round of antibiotics for a persistent antibiotic resistant ear infection. This has been going on for 6 weeks and he is in a lot of pain and totally miserable. I finally demanded a referral to an Ear Nose & Throat Dr. They gave me one, but didn't state that this is urgent so we can't be seen for a month. I am starting to worry about my sons hearing and other long term effects of the ear infection and being on meds. for so long (the antibiotics have given him horrible thrush and diarrhea too). Does it seem that my Doctors have been negligent in not giving us an urgent referral? We have been going to the Dr. several times a week because of this and I just feel like they are not taking this seriously. Am I just being overprotective or do others think this sounds serious? Has anyone else had this experience? What was the outcome? Has anyones infant got tubes? I think that is where we are headed. Thanks for reading this and I will appreciate any advice/ideas!
So What Happened?™
Thank you so much for all your thoughtful responses. I am going to try taking my son to a chiropractor, I hadn't heard that one and am excited to see if it helps him. We were able to get my son in at Stanford to see one of the best ENTs. He said that his tubes are just too small and he needs to have ear tubes inserted in order to drain the fluid. In regards to the now 5 rounds of antibiotics he has been on, this doctor said that it is necessary and he actually might need to be on one more round while we wait to have the surgery done. He said as long as the ear is infected it needs to be treated. I was surprised to hear that with the tubes, my son does not have to wear ear plugs and can take a bath/swim without any problems. I really trust this doctor and believe we are making the right decision. At this point I am more worried about the prolonged antibiotic use than the ear surgery. Thanks again for your ideas/advice/concern. I REALLY appreciated it! Sincerely, M.
H.F. answers from Sacramento on May 16, 2008
I am so sorry you are having to go through this. I know how it is. My son had chronic ear infections from 1 to 12 months of age. Finally we were able to get tubes (after he became resistant to all antibiotics and were told he had significant hearing loss). I hope that you are able to get him in to an ENT soon. Tubes were the best thing for my son, without a doubt.
A.P. answers from Sacramento on May 16, 2008
did the ENT tell you they couldn't get you in before a month unless the referring doc said it was urgent? call your pediatrician and tell them to make it urgent and get the re-referral. Also, call your patient advocate at your insurance and file a complaint against your kid's doc, that seems very negligent if the child is on 4 antibiotics. Either he's got a resistant strain, or he doesn't have a bacterial infection. The other alternative is you haven't been medically compliant with his medications (doubtful if you are a halfway caring mommy, and you obviously are), so a non urgent referral for a baby that age with a persistent infection is really cruel, and should be reported. Although it could have been a mistake with his office assistant. If the ENT the doc referred really cannot see you for whatever reason, ask for another --URGENT-- referral.
Another option? Take him to an urgent care clinic, pay the 50 bucks copay or whatever, and have THAT doc refer you to the ENT on call who takes your insurance (they should have a few numbers, you may have to drive.) Urgent and ER visits should be covered, but check with your insurance if you are referred to a doc who may not be in your preferred providers.
1 mom found this helpful
K.U. answers from San Francisco on May 17, 2008
Yes. Your doctors are not taking this seriously enough, but they also must have given you the wrong types of antibiotics. After the first failure they should have used something less common and less likely to have resistance against it. I'd talk to a naturopath to find a more user-friendly and effective treatment.
J.S. answers from San Francisco on May 16, 2008
Keep him away from dairy and sugar... including fruits.
Thrush is a form of candidiasis (The reason for eliminating the sugar) so he has basically lost all of the good bacteria which then gives him diarrhea as well. You need to replenish the good bacteria in his body as well.
I would take him to a naturopathic doctor or a chiropractor. Being on Antibiotics that often isn't a good thing.
J.V. answers from San Francisco on May 18, 2008
Hello! I have a son who is now 1 year old. He was sick since about 4 months old over and over. Ear infections, antibiotics that gave him diarrhea and rashes. He could never clear all the fluid out of his poor ears and would get so congested he could barely breath sleep or eat. I would take him all the time to the dr. and it seemed they never took it very seriously. Finally the dr. said he would refer us to the ENT but to wait 2-3 months to see if he would get better on his own. I didn't want to wait because I knew he needed the tubes to get better. I knew he needed help right away. We also had to wait a month to get an appointment. By that time he was on daily breathing treatments for wheezing. Any way, he got tubes put in at 10 months old. The dr. said his ears were so bad they were about to rupture and he probably couldn't hear very well. The tubes have totally helped, also he is now on Singulair for asthma and alllergies which has been a lifesaver! He hasn't had trouble with his ears and he hasn't needed the breathing treatments since starting the new medicine. I haven't noticed any side effects either. I would reccomend you get a probiotic for your son to replace some of the good bacteria in his gut from all the antibiotics destroying everything. Also you may want to take him off dairy for awhile. My son drinks rice milk. Consider taking gluten out of his diet too just to see how he does. A lot of kids have a gluten sensitivity. It's not as hard as it sounds especially at his age. You are not being overprotective, you are smart to listen to your instincts and you need to find a new pediatrician ASAP. We switched and love our new dr. He listens and cares. I live in Pleasant Hill though so don't know anyone in your area. Get him the tubes as soon as you can. The procedure is fast and simple. Good luck! J.
D.S. answers from Bakersfield on May 16, 2008
sorry to say this this way but give 'em hell...they dont call it a medical "practice" for a reason. you're gut feeling is almost always right-you are mommy. if they dont refer you right away and state it as urgent then get another dr. or pay out of pocket to see one. who is your pediatrician? if it is dr. bustamante then enough said-get another pediatrician. his negligence almost cost my son (now 2) a kidney. you are NOT being over protective...you can never be that way (unless you put them in a bubble). i cant tell you how serious it is that you trust your instinct. my son was on ammoxicilian from 3mo-1yr and he has developed an immunity for being on it for so long. If it were my kids id get another dr...or at least a 2nd opinion. even if its out of pocket, most dr's will let you pay in payments and if your paying cash then usually they'll give you a break. please let me know what happens. i HIGHLY recomend dr. hitesh shah (he's in bakersfield--even my sons kidney dr @ ucla said that he is one of the best in the states and has a high amount of respect for him). ive had some really scary experiences with my son and ill spare you the events but trusting myself over dr's was the best thing i did. dr shah is truly amazing though and i do trust him. even if you have to pay out of pocket, he's totally worth it. ...however, as said before, TRUST YOURSELF...YOU ARE YOUR CHILD'S ONLY ADVOCATE.
K.B. answers from Sacramento on May 18, 2008
Ditto on the homeopath! It sucks to pay out of pocket but so worth it. Also get him on some probiotics, a local natural foods store can recommend one for you. I just empty a capsule into my son's yogurt, so you can replace all the good bacteria being zapped by the antibiotics to stop the thrush & diarrhea.
T.T. answers from Yuba City on May 17, 2008
Your doctors are being ignorant in my opinion. If they referred you and did not indicate this is of an urgency, contact the specialist yourself and see what comes of it. If nothing, it's time to find another specialist or doctor. If you're with Kaiser, ask to be seen by ANY ENT doctor that has the first available appointment and let them know it is an emergency. All else fails go to the ER, that might get you going faster. Sounds like the little one my need tubes to help matters.
R.V. answers from San Francisco on May 17, 2008
Hi M., I have one word for you "homeopathy". I hope I spelled it right. I know a couple families right here in Santa Cruz who have had wonderful results from seeing Karen Cohen. I see her myself for something else but have sent a good friend and my brothers family to her for ear infection problems and it cured it. And their next step was ear tubes for the on going ear infections during the first 4 years of their sons life. You can call her and have a free consultation over the phone and she very honestly will tell you if she can help and what experience she's had with ear problems. For my skin problem she told me she wasn't sure she could help but she had seen some people have positive results. Well I am one of the some now . Homeopathy has many positive effects. You just have to give it time sometimes. Others will notice right away. Everybody is different. Best wishes to you and I think you are right to be concerned. Oh and you can look her name up in our local phone book. I have heard we a couple of good homeopathests in town. R.