A week from Hell

We got home from our anniversary dinner expecting to find one little monster awake, but to our surprise Grandpa was walking around singing to Kenzie as well.

We knew that she wasn’t well because she has a slight fever before we left for dinner but after some meds she seemed to calm down and went off to sleep quite easily. So we decided not to pass up the opportunity to our first night out alone in 9 months and went anyway leaving you both in the capable hands of Grandpa.

Grandpa said you had been awake for about 10 minutes but you were just not yourself and had a slight fever. Anyway we watched you for a while but you just didn’t seems to be breathing correctly and I wasn’t taking any more chances, so we made the decision to take you to Fourways Life Hospital Casualty to be checked. Honestly there are hospitals closer to us but the experiences we have had in the past made us drive a little further to Fourways. At this stage it was around 11:30 and Hunter was super excited to be driving around at night time so we packed him in too. After a full on road block with a screaming and vomiting baby in car, we finally arrived and were seen pretty quickly by the doctor who diagnosed Kenzie with a sore throat in the record time of 3 minutes. She prescribed antibiotics even though I said I thought it was strange that it was her throat again because she had just been treated 2 weeks ago for a throat infection, but who am I to question a Doctor? So off we went with some suppositories for pain until we could get her antibiotics in the morning.

The next day, there was no change in Kenzie at all and we got her meds as soon as the pharmacy opened in the morning. She seemed to improve slightly over Saturday and Sunday but was still so irritable. I thought this was completely normal because everyone says it takes the antibiotics 3 days to work so I was expecting her to be better by Monday.

Monday I left for work after a busy night with Kenzie, she was still smiling but definitely not herself. Grandpa called in the afternoon to check if he could give her another suppository but said she was OK even though her fever was high. By the time we got home on Monday afternoon I took one look at her and packed a bag for the hospital. She was completely lifeless, moaning and very warm.

We drove to Wilgeheuwel hospital simply because it was the closest hospital and I knew she needed to be seen quickly. We were taken in immediately and Kenzie was checked by the nurse, temperature 40 degrees (my heart nearly stopped). They gave her 2 suppositories before the doctor had a look at her which seemed to put some life back into her.

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After explaining the history of the last weekend the Doctor had a look at her ears and throat and reported that they were VERY inflamed! He also said she had a crackling in her chest and needed to go for X-rays to rule out pneumonia. I questioned the fact that she had been given Orelox for her throat on Friday, how can she possibly be worse and his response was that he sees plenty of patients come back after taking Orelox because the antibiotic doesn’t work!. At this stage I am borderline hysterical because that was her 2nd dose of Orelox in a month why hasn’t any other Doctor told me it doesn’t work? Also how could I have possibly not noticed this child may have pneumonia?

Heavy with worry we went for X-Rays and a half hour later the Doctor returned to say “We have trouble here! Definitely Bronchial Pneumonia she needs to be admitted immediately”. So after all the paper work and don’t forget confirmation of payment of R 750 for the consultation we were admitted under Dr Simmanks care.

It must have been 20 minutes after the initial diagnosis that Dr Simmank walked in and without even touching Kenzie said she was sure that she didn’t have Bronchial Pneumonia.


She checked her ears – clear, checked her throat – clear, and checked the X-Rays – clear! Now completely puzzled at how one Doctor gets it so wrong I listen to her as she tells me that other than her fever there is nothing wrong with Kenzie but they will try get a drip up anyway and watch her overnight. 45 minutes trying to find a vein that didn’t move around with no luck, eventually she said that she will wait for the morning before trying to find another vein because she was so clammy and upset. Doc also said that Orelox should have cleared any infection… so she is not sure why it’s not working, only other reason could be viral.

Overnight she was bad temp ranging from 38 – 39.9 degrees all night and she was very restless.

The next morning one of the nurses asked me when last I had changed a wet nappy. Honestly I could not remember, I hadn’t even thought about it because I assumed she was dehydrated from fever and she wasn’t drinking much either. The nurse suggested we do an in and out catheter to get urine from the urinary tract and see from there. I couldn’t handle another horror scene so the nurse took her by herself while we waited. The nurse confirmed that the urine was cloudy and would wait for the Doctor but would send it off for tests.

In between all of this Discovery Health pop past to drop off a teddy for Kenzie wishing her well and I used this opportunity to complain about the misdiagnosis the night before in Casualty. The unit manager then arrived to ask more questions and after listening to the story says “Ja but Casualty Doctors know little bits of everything…” My response was “surely that little bit will cover a sore throat and ears! And what about the X-Rays?” She replies “Oh that will be the radiologist!” Me: “So you have just confirmed that the radiologist also doesn’t know how to diagnose babies?” I am still waiting to hear an apology or even an explanation as to what happen here, I find it amazing that a medical Doctor can get it so wrong, especially because an emergency room is the place you take your kids in the middle of the night, if they can’t treat a baby why isn’t there a qualified pediatrician on call? This is supposed to be private health care – you know the type you pay a hefty premium for in order to get the best care!

Doctor arrived and put up a drip in her head because she couldn’t find a vein with antibiotics and pain meds for fever.


The rest of the day was up and down; fever the same, little drinking and eating and slight runny tummy. Doc decided to keep her for another night. At this stage I actually felt sick myself!


I decided to go home for a shower while Willie stayed with Kenzie. Upon my return Willie was white – Kenzie’s fever had spiked so high that they had to wrap her in an ice cloth to bring it down.


The pain in my back progressed to the point where it was hard to breathe – anxiety attack all I need! Grandpa gave orders to go home to get some rest and he would stay with her overnight.


The next day she was the same, fever was better overnight though but climbing, which means the antibiotic wasn’t working. They removed the drip because her face was starting to swell and we spent the rest of the day and night waiting for urine results and managing the fever


By Thursday morning with no change I was like a cat on a hot tin roof – anxious to get the result from the urine. Eventually they came back indicating a bug in her bladder that was resistant to all antibiotics except 2, which is why she hadn’t been getting any better.


Finally with the correct medication we were discharged after sonar of her kidneys, just to check if there was any damage.

We had a great sleep Thursday night – relieved my baby girl is on the mend.

P.S In the end i was extremely impressed with Dr Simmanks work as well as the staff in the pediatric ward at Wilgeheuwel.

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