Saturday, February 14, 2009

Bronchiolitis 101

I followed up at the our normal doctors office, and then went back to the suction clinic today too. Samantha seems to be doing about the same. At the clinic they assess her when she gets there and then when they are done to keep track of what is going on. 0-3 being slight, 4-6 being moderate, 7-9 being severe. She has been a 5 when we go in and then a 3 when we leave.

Another thing I found out is that bronchiolitis (although I have never heard of it or paid any attention to it) is the illness that RSV causes. It is the respitory problems associated with RSV. My doctor said it is treated the same no matter if RSV caused it or some other virus. Their is so much hype on RSV, it kind of makes me really nervous.... but things seem to be going okay.

Bronchiolitis.... not to be confused with Bronchitis.... some interesting facts about Bronchiolitis (taken from

Bronchiolitis is a common illness of the respiratory tract caused by an infection that affects the tiny airways, called the bronchioles, that lead to the lungs. As these airways become inflamed, they swell and fill with mucus, making breathing difficult.

Kids who have had bronchiolitis may be more likely to develop asthma later in life, but it's unclear whether the illness causes or triggers asthma, or whether children who eventually develop asthma were simply more prone to developing bronchiolitis as infants. Studies are being done to clarify the relationship between bronchiolitis and the later development of asthma.

Bronchiolitis is usually caused by a viral infection, most commonly respiratory syncytial virus (RSV). RSV infections are responsible for more than half of all cases of bronchiolitis and are most widespread in the winter and early spring. Other viruses associated with bronchiolitis include rhinovirus, influenza (flu), and human metapneumovirus.

Signs and Symptoms
The first symptoms of bronchiolitis are usually the same as those of a common cold:
-runny nose
-mild cough
-mild fever

These symptoms last a day or two and are followed by worsening of the cough and the appearance of wheezes (high-pitched whistling noises when exhaling).
Sometimes more severe respiratory difficulties gradually develop, marked by:
-rapid, shallow breathing
-a rapid heartbeat
-drawing in of the neck and chest with each breath, known as retractions
-flaring of the nostrils
-irritability, with difficulty sleeping and signs of fatigue or lethargy

According to the website, the incubation period can be a few days to a week, and the duration of it is somewhere around 12 days with the 2nd and 3rd day being the worst. We are on day 3, so we will see how it all goes from here. It doesn't seem like the inhaler they gave her is working or doing much. Not to mention, trying to get a 9 month old to breath through a little mask is horrible! I have to FORCE it on her face while I am what feels like sitting on her to keep her hands away and her head still while she takes 6 breathes. Then to give her a minute break and then do it all over again. HORRIBLE!!

Then last night sometime in the middle of the night, I was too tired to look to see what time it was. I heard Samantha crying and coughing and saw it was okay to give her another puff of medicine, I take the cylinder and shake it like I am suppose to before I give it to her. I feel for the little mask on the one end and it is gone.... I had shook it right off. I am scrambling in the dark to find it, and finally have to turn on the light... Poor Rob, I woke him up. I finally found it. I thought I might have to go back to Walgreen's or something.

I guess I won't be going anywhere soon, since I don't want to take Samantha out and get anyone else sick. I realized that it also means I am teaching my energetic 5 year olds tomorrow by myself again (since Robert will stay home from church with Samantha)... maybe I should just bring some candy to bribe them... that isn't a bad idea really!

I better get myself to bed, I am EXHAUSTED still!


Wendy said...

I am so sorry. Michele Ramirez in the ward has a one-year-old going through the same thing right now. I hope things improve. Take care.

wendy said...

I'm sorry, too! I hope you get some rest and that nobody else gets sick. It sounds awful!

Julie said...

I hope things are getting better. I hope you get some sleep too. Reilly really has a bad cough too. Hope it gets better. We miss you alot. love ya