Today, four days after Austin got sick, we finally got an answer as to why he got sick.
In the ER, they asked if Austin was taking any medication. We said, "No." After they diagnosed him with pancreatitis and told us he'd have to be transferred to another hospital and admitted, I knew it would be at least a couple hours before he was actually move so I ran home to grab some clothes for Austin. While I was gathering his things, I noticed a prescription bottle on his desk and I remembered that Austin actually had been taking some medication. I threw the bottle in my bag and headed back to the hospital. When I got there, I mentioned to the nurse that I'd forgotten that Austin had been taking medication. She told me to tell them at the new hospital since Austin was being transferred.
The paramedic who transferred Austin asked if he took medication. I said he did and showed him the bottle. He made a note of it.
Once we arrived at the new hospital, I told 2 different doctors who saw him in the ER about the meds, just in case the the medicine had anything to do with the pancreatitis. I also told a woman who said she was with the pharmacy there. She took the bottle and wrote down the information.
Upon arrival in his room, we told the nurse and and also told the regular doctor who saw us that Austin had been taking Monodox for a couple months.
Austin has seen 4 different GI doctors this week. None of them have asked if he has been taking any medication. They all asked him some different questions though. In fact, they all asked the same questions every single day. A couple days ago, one of the doctors asked me these same questions.
"Hi, I'm Dr. So&So. I have some personal questions to ask you. Now, I'm not pointing fingers, but you need to answer honestly. Does he smoke?"
"Does he binge drink?"
"Binge drink? He doesn't drink at all."
"Does he do drugs?"
He asked those questions in an accusing voice. It made me want to say, "Oh yeah, he smokes a pack a day and drinks a case a day and I'm the one who's been buying it for him since he was 8 years old." I didn't think this stuffy doctor would catch the sarcasm however.
"Has he had any blunt trauma to his abdomen?"
"Austin? No. Now, if you were talking about my middle son, I'd say that there's a pretty good chance he suffered some abdominal trauma, but not Austin."
"Anything at all? Has he fallen? Has he walked into something? Has a dog fallen on him?"
I choked back a laugh at his final question. Where on earth did he come up with that one? I pictured dogs falling from the sky. Maybe that's where they got 'raining cats and dogs'. I resisted the urge to say, "No, but once he was hit by a falling cat."
"This is serious. I need to know if he's been hit in the abdomen."
"Sorry," I put on a serious face. "No, he hasn't been hit by anything. Not even a dog." Heh heh heh. So much for the serious face.
And then he was gone. A few quick questions. Cut me off when I tried to ask questions. Poof. Gone.
Austin was tested for drugs, triglyceride levels, autoimmune diseases, HIV (even though we told them he donates blood every couple months and does not have HIV), and other assorted weird diseases, when all they had to do was ask one pretty simple, basic question - are you taking any medication? Or, maybe they could've taken a few minutes to actually talk to us. Or maybe they could've discussed things with the regular doctor who did ask that question. Or maybe they could've taken the time to actually look at Austin's chart. Just sayin'.
Today, a GI doctor asked Austin if he was taking any medication. Austin told him, "Yes, Monodox."
The doctor instantly exclaimed, "That's why! It's from the medication!"
The good news is that we know now, thankfully. If they hadn't finally asked about the medication, he could have gone home, started taking it again, and wound up right back in the ER again. It's an easy fix to simply stop taking the meds and that's a great thing! Also, he turned the corner today. He's still very sore and still running a fever, but the pain has started to lesson a bit and he's been able to keep clear liquids down. His oxygen levels are going back up too so it seems like his lung is getting better.
But, because this is my family we're talking about, every time something good happens, something bad has to come balance it out. Savannah, who'd been feeling a little better the past few days, has gotten worse again. She's in a ton of pain and now has numbness in her right hand and foot. Guess who's going back to the doctor tomorrow.