The Stomach Flu…not again!

by Leighann on February 8, 2016

None of this is medical advice, see the disclaimer below.

I was actually in the middle of writing a post about how we deal with diabetes when Q has performances, but I thought the topic of stomach flu would be appropriate this time of year. The stomach flu has hit Q for the third time this winter. And of course it picked the absolute worst day to strike.

Here are my Facebook status updates:

3:34 am Really?! 3am and Q is up puking. Developing ketones, too. And of course the play opens tonight and she’ll be at the theatre for over 5 hours. Gave her a zofran, which I had stashed away. This had better be the quickest illness ever.

9:48 am Q is still sleeping. When we checked her BG at 7am she had 1.3 ketones. Hopefully she sleeps until noon and her ketones are down and she doesn’t puke again.

It’s opening night and the show must go on…I just hope it doesn’t go on without her.

11:19 am Ugh! She’s awake but she still has 1.3 ketones. She said her voice isn’t good. She has a solo to sing tonight! She’s eating jello hoping to keep it down…and hoping that calories and insulin help to bring down those ketones.

Of all the days to be sick. I hate for her to miss the performance tonight since she’s been rehearsing for 6 weeks. And I wish call time wasn’t 1:45 for a 6pm curtain. She doesn’t need to run through the show 2 more times, she needs to conserve her energy.

12:15 pm She’s going in around 3:30 in time for their last run through, dinner (which she won’t feel like eating, I’m sure) and makeup.

Ketones are coming down. Blood sugar isn’t good, but isn’t crazy. She’s just laying low, watching reruns of Project Runway.

Twice since Q was diagnosed with diabetes she has ended up in the hospital because of the stomach flu. The first time I was completely freaked out. I think she was four at the time and it was our first experience with illness after diagnosis. At the on-call doctor’s advice we went straight to the ER. Her blood sugar was high and she was developing ketones. And that was back in the day that we were naively using urine ketone strips (now we use blood ketone strips).

The second time she was in kindergarten or first grade. She threw up her bedtime snack, which she had just received insulin for. Her blood sugar was tanking and there was nothing I could do to get it back up. She was developing ketones. I had the glucagon at the ready and was googling and messaging friends trying to remember how to do “mini glucagon.” At 2:00 in the morning the on call endo said I had done everything I could and it was time to get help. I took her to the ER and she ended up spending two days and nights in the hospital until she could keep down food. She received anti-nausea meds and fluids, both by IV.

Another time we were able to stay out of the hospital. We got in to see our pediatrician who insisted on blood work before prescribing anti-nausea meds…just to make sure it wasn’t something else, like appendicitis.

Another time I had to yell at the on-call nurse because the on-call doctor couldn’t be bothered to talk to me because “the stomach flu isn’t a diabetes issue.” You better believe they got an ear full!

It seems like about every other winter she gets the stomach flu. Sometimes we can manage it at home and sometimes we need help. I think the most important thing for keeping our child safe is that I reach out for help when I need it. Sometimes it’s just for reassurance that I am doing everything right. Sometimes it’s because I need to be told that I’ve done everything I can at home and it’s time for medical help.

We managed to keep her out of the hospital this particular weekend. She performed that night and again the next. I could tell that she wasn’t quite as animated as she normally is on stage. But she didn’t let the stomach flu…or diabetes…keep her from the culmination of 6 weeks of rehearsals.

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More posts about illness

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More posts about sports, activity, and exercise (because theater definitely is active!)

Please remember that I never give medical advice. Ask your endocrinologist or pediatrician for advice about your own child. Make your own informed decisions for your own child.

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