Saturday Nora woke up with a runny nose. By the afternoon, she had a fever of 102.7. Early Sunday morning, around 1:00am, she started vomiting. Suddenly, I remembered the memo that was posted on the door to the toddler classroom at daycare. “We wanted to inform you that a child in this classroom has a confirmed case of Hand, Foot and Mouth Disease…”
I know, this disease sounds scary as hell. As I learned in the emergency room on Sunday morning, it’s a virus like any other, only is gets a name because it can cause sores on the hands, foot and mouth, and a rash on the cheeks. The official name of the virus is Cocksackie. I took Nora in because she could not keep anything down. We’d give her a tiny sip of Pedialite and five minutes later it would come right back up. She had chapped lips, and I was freaked out about dehydration. Last summer, my husband had to get an IV to stop severe dehydration due to food poisoning.
I’m always wary of over-reacting, but I’m glad we took her in, she was beginning to dehydrate (but wasn’t bad yet). They gave her a medication called Zofran, which stops nausea and vomiting (it was originally used for people undergoing chemotherapy).
The nurse in the ER told me that if she could make one change to the health care system, it would be to make Zofran available over the counter. She said stopping vomiting and the accompanying dehydration could dramatically reduce the number of visits to emergency rooms. She was planning to write a letter to Obama about it. You go, Nurse Laura!
I am home with Nora today, she still has diarrhea, but no more vomiting. My husband had the genius stroke of suggesting she wear pull-ups until the diarrhea gets better. We were both shocked when she consented. She’s drinking Pedialite out of a wine glass and getting lots of rest. It’s tough seeing our little fireball reduced to an ember; we’re looking forward to her speedy recovery.