Bumped. A must read post for all members of the Bruin Nation. GO BRUINS. - BN Eds.
I'm writing this for two reasons. #1 to get the word out so a young life can be saved & #2 to let all of my brother & sister Bruins know that there is a little Bruin out there you should be VERY proud of.
Last Thursday my wife called me at work saying our 20th month old Sebastian was sick and had what looked to be pink eye but without any discharge. She gave him all the usual meds that night & we wrote it off as another illness he got from being around preschoolers. His "big brother" is almost 3 years old & as many of you with kids know- preschoolers get sick all the time. Next morning I get a text at work from my wife saying he's getting worse & our pediatrician is out so she has to take him to another doctor. This other doctor orders blood work because she thinks he might have something rare in the US called Kawasaki's disease.
This is a disease discovered in Japan by a Dr. Kawasaki in the sixties. It’s more common in Asia, but it’s here too & typically attacks male kids under 5 years old. Girls get it too. It can cause heart damage in as little as 5 days and if left untreated past that it can be fatal. So this bug is bad & quick. Now it's on, we are waiting for lab results, but we are reading up now that lab work for detecting this disease isn't conclusive-- partly because the cause is still unknown. Experts think it's airborne & only certain immune systems trigger it. Fortunately there is a cure, but like everything else – once the damage is done it can’t be fixed, so time is everything.
Even the possibility that our little boy could die got us into the "we don't have a nanosecond to spare" mode. 1 hour, 2 hours, 3 hours roll by & the lab still isn't done & we are hearing Monday out of everyone's mouth on the phone as we scramble for feedback... so instead of losing it we get a second opinion & that made all the difference. This second doctor (Dr. Kathleen Hurwitz) was great. She pushed for the blood results, explained what she was looking for & when she finally got it she still wasn't entirely convinced & was almost ready to send us home; but because there were doubts she made the call to Rady Children's in San Diego (60 miles from us). Pictures were taken & the lab report was sent to basically one of the world's experts on this disease (when it comes to children's medicine no one does it better than Rady Children’s). They pull the trigger saying we caught this bug in Sebastian early & he needs to be in a hospital bed tonight.
I was in the Army & I've seen a lot since, but nothing compares to this. Midnight rolls around & they are sticking an IV in my little boy without sedatives- everything they did to him that night & the next day was done without any drugs which is unusual because they need kids that little to be still,... he cried only once but it wasn't from pain or fear- there were no tears. It was the sleep he was missing & he was pissed being held down at midnight. Wouldn’t you!? This little Bruin is made of steel. I just don’t know how else to describe it.
I'm writing this the day we brought him home, & for all the grief his mom & I went through it is nothing compared to the stories we heard of children that don't get help when they need it. Information is power so if these words land in even one persons eye’s that is in any way connected to young children YOU could save a life. Signs include fever, blood shot eyes, a rash, swollen throat, red or cracked lips, hands or feet. Learn more here: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmedhealth/PMH0001984/#adam_000989.disease.causes & here http://m.npr.org/news/Health/153024828
As for Sebastian, he's got a small complication, but the docs expect a full recovery. We are taking him to Dr. Jane Burns next week for a check-up. That is going to be the first time in forever that I actually look forward to going to a hospital again. We need to know he's ok of course, but we also want to thank his doctor again, & ask her how we can help.
God Bless & Go Bruins!
Tony & Marie