Wednesday, September 21, 2005

The Cough/Puke Maneuver

Satchel has had a cough for about three months now. Occasionally it faded away, but for the most part it was there. We had to give him cough medicine so he could sleep. Sometimes he would cough so hard he would puke.

Instinctively he would hold his hand out, catch the puke, and then show us. “Look, I pee-yuked,” he would say.

More often than not, the puke was just a bunch of snot.

Nice huh?

On his first visit to the doctor he was given a prescription for an antibiotic and Tussionex. I wasn’t too thrilled about the antibiotic since he had no fever or other signs of a virus, but Tussionex is like a gift from the sleeping gods.

“Go ahead and give some to Jiro at night, too,” the nurse practioner advised.

For the week that the prescription lasted, Warren and I enjoyed cough free evenings and the boys slept longer and better than ever.

Once the Tussionex was gone, Satchel’s cough was back. Tired of over-medicating him, I started putting Vick’s on his chest at night. It worked pretty well, but the cough was still there. And the cough/puke maneuver persisted.

Usually we could see it coming—any sustained coughing fit was suspicious. We would watch closely and try to get him to work through it sans vomit. But sometimes he would just be running from one room to the next, seemingly fine, and then wham! out of nowhere he would puke.

One night at my mom’s house, Satchel was sitting in my lap, hiding from his Uncle Buttcrack and before I knew it I had puke running down my back.

That was the final straw.

On our second visit to the doctor, we were told that Satchel had Asthma.


I was devastated. I am the anti-smoking Nazi. Second hand smoke does not come near my offspring. After mentally beating myself up, I did a little research and have since laid the blame on the dogs. We live in a very furry house. I had always heard that having pets could ward off Asthma.

Obviously not in this case.

Warren blames our cleaning lady. “He never coughed until she started coming,” he argued. But how could a cleaner, fur-free (at least for a day or two) house cause Asthma?

I’m hoping it is somehow seasonal, or at least something he will outgrow. The doctor prescribed Cingulair. I read the (incredibly long) list of side effects and took some solace in the fact that the first one was “may cause drowsiness.”

However, the first three days Satchel took the Cingulair it was nearly impossible to get him to sleep. Like two hours of rubbing and massaging and begging and pleading and still no sleeping. I revisited the side-effect list to see that the very last one was “may cause difficulty sleeping.”


Now Satchel takes it in the morning instead of the evening and it is a little easier to get him to sleep. But by the wee hours it seems to wear off and precious hours of sleep are full of coughing coughing coughing once again. And sometimes puking.

It’s really just not any fun at all. Please let Winter be better.


Anonymous said...

Oh Stacey that's really tough about the asthma. I wish I had good advice or could help somehow. Next time I'm around I'll buy you a margarita; at least it will help temporarily. B in P'land.

Lone Star Ma said...

I'm so sorry. They did check for pnuemonia, right? My Lone Star Girl used to get nasty-coughs at that age - allergies working their way into lower respiratory infections - and, although she felt pretty much fine and had no fever, ended up with walking pneumonia according to the chest x-rays. They thought she probably had asthma at one point and put her on a breathing med. trial but it never made a lick of difference so they decided she didn't have it. The good news was that at 4, she started taking zyrtec and stopped getting sick, then after awhile, didn't even need the zyrtec. Don't despair!

Stephanie said...

I'm sorry! What is it with this generation and asthma?

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...