Well...after getting on the internet and looking up a few things we took our son Ethan to the doctor on Thursday due to some unusual nasty bruising he was getting all over his body. We were sent directly to the hospital for some blood work. We were told to stay put and wait. We were then sent back to the doctor where he informed us that he was pretty positive he didn't have leukemia but thought he may have what's called ITP (Immune Thrombocytopenic Purpura) and that we needed to get him up to Lutheran Hospital ASAP to see a hematologist, Dr. O'Brian. They would be waiting for us. Let me tell you what....when you can get in to see a specialist without an appointment like right now you know it's serious.
Once we got to Lutheran they took more blood and we found out that ITP is a bleeding disorder caused when your body's defense system mounts an attack and destroys healthy blood platelets thinking they are disease-causing agents. Well, your platelets maintain the integrity of the blood vessels and basically keep you from bleeding to death when you get an injury. A normal platelet count is 150,000 to 400, 000. Anything less than 10,000 is considered an emergency. His count at Huntington was 10,000. By the time we got to Lutheran it was 7,000.
He was admitted into the children's hospital and given an IVIG, which is an infusion of healthy plasma that lasted about six hours. Besides taking his blood four times (a lot of it I might add) and having to put in an IV five times (he pulled out two in his sleep, two veins blew, and they had to put the final IV in his foot which meant he could not get out of bed for about 24 hours); one of the side affects of the IVIG is nausea. So he spent most of the day Friday puking everything he ate or drank back up so they ended up hooking him up to fluids. By Friday night his platelet count was up to 30,000 and by Saturday morning 85,000. They let us come home then. Now....we wait....and see if his body is going to maintain a normal platelet count. He has to go in once a week for a blood test.
During this whole ordeal Ethan was so brave and seldom cried and never had to be held down while everyone poked and prodded him over and over. It was so heartbreaking for us to see him go thru that but we were so proud of him for being so brave. We were told he may never have an episode again or he may have to deal with this his whole life. We'll just have to wait and see. In the meantime he has to take it easy. No craziness. Like jumping around on the furniture or from one bed to the next or basically anything a rambunctious three year old boy loves to do because of the chance of injury, especially a head injury. If you have a three year old boy you know that is easier said than done.
Why post here...I need to vent. It's frustrating for me to have to see my child go through that. All the while they were sticking needles in him, to see him look over at me with his pleading eyes seeming to say "Daddy, they're hurting me." And I couldn't do anything because I know that they are helping him...
He's a trooper. He's my hero.