It's been a busy and stressful few weeks.
At his 9 month check-up, we discovered Nicholas had yet another ear infection and he was just starting to develop a cough. His cough got much worse over the next 2 days and he was up all night screaming, crying, and gasping for air. We went through this once before a few months back, so I knew he would end up needing nebulizer treatments again. Little did I know how bad it actually was...
We had to take him in to the doctor 3 days in a row to check his oxygen levels. The first two days, his oxygen was 93% (considered "borderline") and the third day it had dropped to 86%. The pediatrician told me he was admitting Nicholas to the hospital for bronchiolitis (not the same as bronchitis). Everything is sort of a blur from that moment on. I was shaking and fighting back tears and trying to figure out what on earth to have my husband bring from home. We walked right over to the hospital and were admitted that afternoon.
Strangely enough, the afternoon nurses and doctors didn't seem at all in a rush to get my son breathing normally. They all said they heard a lot of wheezing and he was using his abdomen a lot to breathe (which is NOT good), but for some reason we ended up waiting around for hours before the NIGHT nurse came on duty and finally hooked him up to some oxygen.
The rest of our time in the hospital was great. The nurses and respiratory therapists were wonderful. He was given steroids (to reduce inflammation in his airway) and antibiotics (for the ear infection), and he was hooked up to oxygen tubes and had his oxygen levels monitored around the clock. It took 6 days before they were finally able to wean him off the oxygen, but he was a trooper and he charmed the pants off all the nurses.
A week later, his breathing is back to normal, but he developed a stomach virus which my husband and I both caught. It has not been a fun few days in my house, but we're all on the mend. I'm on Spring Break this week, so I have Nicholas home with me, but he will return to day care full time next week. Fingers crossed that he can stay healthy for the next 2 months since I'm out of sick days!
Here are some pictures of Nicholas from the hospital: