One Moment Happy, The Next Moment In Trauma

That’s just what happened to Baby C yesterday. She was so happy playing masak-masak and Lego blocks with her 2 cheh chehs in the afternoon. However, she was screaming her heart out the next moment…. in the ER of SJMC.

Check out my health blog to find out what happened to my poor baby.

Baby C On Solids…. And Her Weight Dropped Further

I started Baby C on solids about a week ago. Her first ever taste of solids was some organic ground brown rice for babies that my sil bought from Hong Kong. I mixed it with some lotus root soup and she loved it.

Baby C smiling away after tasting her first spoonful of rice cereal as she was being carried by daddy.

However, after the most recent UTI attack and 3 days of antibiotics drips through IV line, her appetite reduced drastically. After the IV line was removed prematurely on Monday night and she had to be fed oral antibiotics (Zinnat), which made her puke each time she was forced fed with the meds, she now has a phobia of eating or drinking anything from a spoon or a syringe except my milkie which is direct from my boops! I was really devastated when the nurse weighed her yesterday and her weight had dropped 200gms…. to a mere 6.72kg!   She’s already slightly below average in weight and with the recent hospitalization, her weight plummeted further. I am just terribly worried. Hopefully she will regain her appetite, eat more and put on some weight very soon.

Almost The Whole Day Spent At The Hospital

I spent almost the whole day at the hospital with Baby C and my maid today.  We reached the hospital at 10am for the antibiotics drip.  We were told by the doctor to collect baby’s pee for another urine culture to see if the WBCs have dropped.  That’s because no sensitivity test has been done on  the alternative (safer) antibiotics used to treat baby.  If the WBCs drop, it means that the Proteus bacteria is sensitive to the antibiotics.  If not, baby would have to be given the antibiotics that’s known to cause some adverse side effects, if given on a prolonged basis.  I was worried sick for 2 days.  The initial urine test today showed that the WBCs have dropped from 860 to 6… thank God!

I had to place baby on my lap throughout the drips coz the moment she was placed on the crib, she bawled.

Collecting baby’s pee was extremely difficult today coz baby was very traumatized.  She can now remember the hospital and the nurses. The minute she’s brought to her room or sees the nurses, she would start crying.  Consequently, she didn’t cooperate when it came to collecting her pee.  4 urine bags were used as the stupid bags kept coming off, despite having plasters stuck to her skin.  My maid and I then used the ‘carry and collect pee’ method but was unsuccessful as she kept struggling and crying.    We spent more than 2 hours to collect the urine… two times as the first specimen wasn’t enough.

Check out my health blog to view more pix of baby on drips taken yesterday.

A Few More UTI Attacks And My Baby Would Need Surgery

We brought the MCUG film (MCUG done at HUKM 2 months ago) to our pediatric nephrologist at SJMC today.  Upon looking at the film, Dr Indon told us that Baby C’s ureter is positioned slightly lower than where it should be, thus the cause of the frequent urine reflux.   She then referred us to a pediatric surgeon at the same hospital.

The surgeon told us that if Baby C keeps having recurring (breakthrough) UTI, it’s best that a ureteral reimplantation be performed.  This will be a major surgery and the ureter would be reimplanted (repositioned).  Success rate is 99%.  The surgeon said that Baby C is still quite young and he wants to give her body a chance to outgrow this reflux.  It is hoped that the ureter will become longer as she grows, thus reduces the reflux.  However, if Baby C keeps getting UTI attacks, it’s best that the surgery be performed to prevent further UTI attacks, thus prevents her right kidney from being scarred.  

The bill came up to almost RM520 today which consists of consultation fees for 2 doctors (surgeon’s consultation fee is RM100!), immunization (6-in-1 jab and Rotavirus) and miscellaneous charges.  Cut-throat charges eh? 

How To See Urine That’s Infected

I will be an expert in ‘analyzing’ pee very soon.  Today, I collected Baby C’s pee again for the routine FEME urine test.  One look and one sniff of the pee in the bottle, I knew it’s going to be fine…. and true, the WBC has dropped to 1-2 (from 10+ on Friday last week). 

For the benefit of other mothers with kids who previously had UTI, if you ever want to know if your baby’s pee is infected or not, just get your baby / toddler to pee into a transparent bottle. If the pee is clear (you can see by holding the bottle up with your hand against sunlight or just below the ceiling lights), then most likely, the pee is not infected.  If the pee is cloudy (with color like barley water or diluted milk) with lots of particles floating inside the pee, most likely your baby has a UTI. My pediatric nephrologist taught me this.  Sometimes, you will see some particles floating in the pee even if the pee is clear.  The floating particles could be some tissues from the lining of the bladder and does not mean that your baby has an infection.

To quell my phobia of another UTI attack, I will do this simple checking every other day.  It’s going to be very time-consuming as it’s extremely difficult to collect Baby C’s pee and troublesome but I will do anything to save my baby’s kidney from being scarred. 

Updates On Baby C’s Breakthrough UTI

Brought Baby C for her 4th dose of antibiotics jab via intra-muscular today.  As usual, she wailed her lungs out.  The dr. ordered another urine FEME test to see if the WBC (white blood cells) in her urine has dropped.  A urine bag was used this time.  I prefer this method of collecting her urine than other torturous methods like inserting a catheter into her urethra or carrying her with her legs apart (she hates this method though it’s not painful).   We waited for almost an hour in the hospital just to collect the urine…. and I had to nurse her several times so that there’s enough fluid in her body.

The urine test showed that the WBC had dropped from 80 to 10+, which is a good sign that the infection is subsiding.  But I’m still worried sick that she will get another UTI attack.  It really breaks my heart to see her poked many times when the dr. searches for a vein (in vain) and subsequently jabbed with very painful intra-muscular antibiotics jab each time she has a UTI attack.  I just have a feeling that she will get another UTI attack.  Oh boy, I am being very very paranoid and pessimistic here…… I must shake this thought away from my mind before I go bonkers! 

Baby C Has Another UTI And Needs Admission

but I can take home leave so that we don’t have to stay in the hospital. Baby C is attacked by the E Coli bacteria (again) and Klebsiella bacteria (which is a strong bug) this time and she needs to have an IV line on her hand for antibiotics to be jabbed through the line. As expected, the dr. could not locate the vein on baby’s chubby hands and feet and she was poked 5 times!!! This time, I requested to be with Baby C in the Procedures Room and my request was acceded as I am considered a ‘regular’ at the hospital.

It was REALLY traumatic for Baby C this time as she was poked 5 times (thrice on her hands and once on each of her foot) as the dr. and nurses searched in vain for a vein. She was screaming with all her might in pain and even her favorite frozen water-filled teething ring or my embrace could not subdue her. The sight of the dr. poking the needle into Baby C’s hands and feet and injecting the antibiotics, in the hope that he had injected it into the vein, only to be rejected when blood oozed out through the needle was just too much for me to bear. Whenever this happened, it meant that the antibiotics wasn’t injected into the vein (well, I think that’s how it works. That’s why finding a vein is very important). The procedure looked as if Baby C’s skin was being skewered as the dr. pushed and pulled the needle back and forth through her skin, like a piece of chicken meat being skewered for bbq and it takes a strong heart to see the entire procedure.

After half an hour of torture and screaming for Baby C, the dr. gave up and said he could not find the vein and said that he will administer the jab via intra-muscular, which was very painful. That was the 6th time Baby C was poked within an hour.

It was another very stressful day for both Baby C and me and we have 4 more days to go as she needs 5 doses of antibiotics jab.

Back home, Baby C was all smiles again when she saw her 2 sisters.  Luckily babies have short-term memory and Baby C will not remember any of these when she grows up. See the bandage on both her feet?  There were 2 more bandages on her hands but I removed them coz Baby C was chewing on them.

Baby C’s UTI attacks are so frequent that I have my drawer stocked up with urine bags and sterile bottles!

Another UTI Attack Or Vaginal Yeast Infection?

I woke up at 5:45am today, skipped jogging and got ready to go to SJMC. I had to be really early as it’s first come first served basis. I was the first patient to see Dr Indon but waited for an hour for her to come in. My guess was right. Dr Indon ordered another urine test to be done by way of inserting the catheter into baby’s urethra.

The catheter

Baby C waiting for Dr Indon to come into the Procedures Room to insert the catheter into her urethra.

This time, it was really traumatic for baby. The first two wasn’t that bad but I guess this time, baby’s old enough to remember the procedures and she cried big time even before the catheter was inserted. We were unlucky this time. There wasn’t enough urine in baby’s bladder and Dr Indon asked me to feed her water. So I bought 2 syringes from the hospital (I dropped one on the floor in my haste to feed her water) and squirted the water into baby’s mouth.  She cried so hard that she choked a few times.  She was wailing away really badly and was really traumatized, so much that she puked all over herself and on the bed.  My maid screamed when baby puked LOL!   Still, there wasn’t enough urine after we waited for about 15 minutes (which seemed like ages) and the catheter came out prematurely….. bummer…. double whammy!!  I then cleaned up baby as she had  vomit all over her body.  Dr Indon had to write a note to the lab to inform the lab assistant to go ahead with the 2 urine tests though the urine collected wasn’t enough.

We waited for 1.5 hours for the results to be out.  There were still 80 WBC (white blood cells) and bacteria in baby’s urine.  But Dr Indon wasn’t quite sure how to treat baby coz I told her that after applying the anti-yeast infection cream on baby’s private part, the foul-smelling urine was gone this morning.  She wasn’t sure if it was a UTI or a vaginal yeast infection and she does not want to jab baby with potent antibiotics unnecessarily.  So she told us to wait until the urine culture report comes out on Tuesday next week before the next course of action is to be taken.  If there’s a heavy growth of bacteria in baby’s urine, baby would have to endure 3 super painful intra-muscular antibiotics (Rocephine) jab again:(

I can only pray that it’s not a UTI and that the WBC and bacteria would be gone in the next urine test to be done next week.  Hubby has burnt a BIG hole in his pocket. The medical bill incurred at SJMC last week and today cost hubby almost RM400, which would have cost us less than RM100 if done at HUKM. But hubby is not complaining at all and says that he is willing to pay so long as baby gets the best treatment. I hope I can see light, bright light at the end of the tunnel soon.

Another UTI!

I am so so down today coz the urine test today showed that there are lots of WBC (white blood cells) in Baby C’s urine, which means that there is possibly another UTI attack. 

Ever since Baby C had UTI 3 months ago, I have a habit of smelling her soiled diaper each time I change the diaper. When I changed her diaper in the wee hours today, her urine/diaper smelled foul and the smell is similar to the pee of someone who had just eaten petai (stinky beans) the night before.  I was worried sick and couldn’t sleep well. This morning, her diaper looked dark yellowish and the foul smell was still there.  I immediately took her urine, which took me the whole morning to painstakingly collect, drop by drop.  Hubby then brought the urine to the hospital only to be told that the urine wasn’t enough to do both the FEME urine test and culture test, aargh…. I really wanted to cry!

I thought I had done everything to keep the UTI at bay from changing her diaper after every pee to washing her bum after every poo, feeding her with probiotics, cranberry juice and what not but still these are not enough to keep the bacteria from attacking my poor baby. I just hope that this is only a false positive for UTI  as this happened 2 weeks ago.  My paed told me today that the foul smelling and dark colored pee could just be a vaginal yeast infection as this had happened to baby 2 months ago.   I’m bringing baby to see Dr. Indon tomorrow and I just have a feeling that she will order another urine test done with the urine collected via a cathether inserted into baby’s urethra again!  If it’s truly another breakthrough UTI, my poor baby has to endure another 3 rounds of very painful intra-muscular antibiotics jab, which she just had 2 weeks ago.  Sigh…… when will our nightmare ever end?  Perhaps the only solution now is via surgery?  I hope not.

Potty-Training Baby C

I started potty-training Baby C 2 days ago. Not that I want to wean her off diapers at such a young age, it’s just that I’m trying my best to prevent another UTI (urinary tract infection) from attacking my baby.

In a child with Kidney Reflux (KR), the urine backflows to the kidney, then flows back down to the bladder. Bacteria will then feast on the stale urine in the bladder. So if I make Baby C pee all her urine out, there will not be any stale urine in the bladder for the bacteria to feast on.  Also, without a urine-soaked diaper, bacteria will not be able to go up her urethra.

It really ain’t easy to make Baby C pee. She hates it when I remove her diaper and carry her with her legs apart. She hates it even more that I let her sit on the potty. Sometimes, she wouldn’t pee on the potty and will only pee the minute I put on a fresh diaper, aargh! Oh gawd, my backache is creeping up again coz it’s quite strenuous on my back carrying her.

“shee shee baby, please wee wee….. shee shee……”

On the advise of Dr Indon, I am keeping Baby C’s diaper area super clean.  I discard her diaper after just one pee and after she poo poos each time, I wash her bum.  It’s really inconvenient and takes up a lot of time, but if this can prevent a UTI, I have no complaints.  I have to put aside the cloth diapers for the time being as it’s just not practical to wash over 10 CDs each day (and I don’t even have more than 10 CDs).  Also, the antibiotics that she’s taking is making her poo poo 3-4 times a day and it’s not practical to wear CD if she poo poos too often.  The current rainy season is making the inserts hard to dry as well.  Hubby has to burn a bigger hole in his pocket by buying more disposable diapers as Baby C uses  between 10-12 diapers a day. 

In between potty-training Baby C, I still managed to whip up a yummy dish for lunch yesterday.  It’s very easy and fast to prepare and my kids love it!