Sunday, August 10, 2008

Here we go again

10 days into cast #7 - the best cast yet - and so far major problems.

The first week, he cried and cried. Seeing a toddler with desperation and shock in his eyes, violently shaking his head no against the pain, reaching his tiny hands up to you, begging for help is not my favorite experience along this casting journey. We thought perhaps it was the ortho tech's hasty trimming and that he missed padding spots (again). We thought perhaps it was muscle soreness from all the manipulation. We thought maybe he was feeling choked because they left it too high on his collar bone and in the car it presses against his esophagus. We thought he might be getting yet another ear infection.

Finally, after a week of motrin, off and on, I did a visual inspection. This sounds easy enough, but let me assure you - a wiggly toddler, thrashing against what is causing him terrible pain, confined to a fiberglass cast - this is not an easy task. His hips were red and inflamed, as is typical. His right underarm was terrible - red, irritated, inflamed. The lack of detail and caution with which the ortho techs pad his cast continues to appall me. I once again had to try to maneuver the thinnest moleskin I could on the edge of the underarm portion. After some bending over a knee, allowing him to calm and go the slightest bit limp, and quick and careful skin manipulation, I was able to get the right arm done.

I moved him to the left, promising, "Just a soft sticky. This isn't going to hurt. I'll go quickly." Daddy held him across his knee, we again tried to use some gravity to pull the cast downward, ever so gently pulling his skin up and away. It was sticking to the shirt layer of his cast! I knew it was bad. I thought they had gotten tape adhesive on the shirt (again) and that was the culprit of much discomfort, irritating his skin. It was just the edge. I was shocked to see this about a half inch below the edge of the cast:

Yet again, out of contact with his physician - out of contact with anyone who really understands what all these wounds entail as far as care, once again angry, frustrated, sickened, disheartened, and sadder than I can articulate for all this baby has to go through. The moist burn care pads don't seem to be helping, but don't seem to be harming either. After having his belly button cut, apparently, either by a cast saw or the sharp edge of fiberglass against it, just last cast - I can't help but wonder what the origin of this one is. When his arm is down, the raw, jagged edges come together. Raising his arms leaves it open and gaping with a white center and bleeding edges. My heart breaks for him. And, tonight, again, we give him motrin and pray for the best tomorrow when we FINALLY will get some answer as to what needs to be done.

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