Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Surgery {Ear Tubes}

This morning, bright and early, James and I made a trip to the hospital for an outpatient procedure.  This is a regular occurrence for us, usually 2-3 times a year.  You know you're a regular when they have the bed set-up in the pre-op area with all of your favorite items and all the nurses greet you by first name.

James watching Barney.

James, our 8 year old son, has an open cleft palate {despite 3 attempts to repair it} so he is prone to ear infections.  As a preventative measure we have to keep {functioning} ear tubes in place.  We've tried the "wait and watch" approach, but he always ends up with an infection, which sets the snowball effect into motion.

     * Trip to the doctor for antibiotics, usually never at a convenient time.  Thankfully our pediatrician's office has an urgent care with evening and weekend appointments!
     * Through trial and error we discovered there is only 1 antibiotic that works for James: Augmentin ES.  The pharmacy doesn't always carry this and sometimes we have to wait a day or two.
     * Augmentin ES is such a strong antibiotic that it causes loose stools and a diaper rash/yeast infection.  Since James takes Probiotics daily, he no longer battles diarrhea while on antibiotics.
     * Not to mention, having a sick little boy.  When James is sick it really takes a toll on his entire system (physically, mentally and emotionally).
     * Decrease in his hearing function with infection and fluid build-up, which in turn effects his speech clarity.

Even though we have to head to the hospital about every 6 months for James to get a new set of ear tubes, it is well worth it!  He has become accustomed to the routine and does incredibly well.  Of course it helps that we have such a great hospital too.  James is such a brave boy with a huge smile, even after surgery!  He complains a little about all the wires and the IV, but maybe he just knows that once they come off he can go home.

James post-operatively, still smiling!
We will re-check his hearing in a couple of weeks and hopefully now that the tubes are functioning properly, his hearing will be closer to normal.  If not, we will deal with it when we come to it.


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