It’s so funny that just over a week ago, my girlfriends and I were sitting in a restaurant discussing the merits of having girls over boys.
“Girls are expensive and there’s a 98% chance she’ll dress like a tramp,” one opined.
“Boys are always in the emergency room,” another counseled.
We laughed heartily, knowing full well that that all kids are a blessing, regardless of their gender. But it seems pretty coincidental that just 6 hours later, Ryder took a tumble which necessitated an emergency room visit. I made reference to it in my Dr.Oz post below, so I thought I’d share the details with y’all.
It all started in the wee hours of Easter morning. Ryder snuck into our room and climbed in bed with us on my husband’s side. As it’s a somewhat familiar occurrence he didn’t think much of it, and wrapped his arms around Ryder. (Usually he would have deposited him in the center of the bed, but that piece of real estate was already being rented by Reid! King sized beds = Worth every penny.)
Well, both my husband and Ryder shifted positions ever so slightly, and I’m assuming Ryder was dreaming, because he rolled off our bed with a flourish. I woke up when I heard a Thump! and sat upright, only to see Ryder calmly climb back in bed and snuggle up in the middle next to me (Reid had since transitioned to the other side – where a baby gate keeps him from falling).
We all went back to sleep without incident… or so I thought. About and hour later, I awoke to see Ryder’s eyes wide open, staring straight ahead.
“What’s wrong, honey? Why aren’t you sleeping?” I asked.
“Boo boo ear,” he whispered back hoarsely.
I immediately instructed hubby to turn on the lights – and encountered a trail of blood on the pillow. Oh no, I thought. I inspected Ryder’s right ear and saw a fresh, angry red laceration across the top of the ear, and a small degree of swelling around the cut.
(It was apparent that he had clipped the side of our night table on the way down – and likely bashed his ear against it quite badly.)
After cleaning his ear with hydrogen peroxide, I took him downstairs so I could ice the area. Not fun! He squirmed every time I came within two feet and cried in pain when the cold made contact. And even with my feeble attempts at keeping the swelling down, within hours the cartilage ballooned up an angry, purplish-blue, and his ear proceeded to stick out at a 45-degree angle from his head.
I was scared. Courtesy of my husband’s UFC obsession, I had seen way too many MMA fighters with cauliflower ears after blunt force trauma. I Googled and found out that an ear can cauliflower after repeated blows… or just one, hard whack. Incision and drainage was necessary to protect the integrity of the ear, and must be carried out before the cartilage began to undergo changes due to the blood collection.
So although we were meant to spend Easter with my parents, we ended up taking Ryder to the Emergency Kids Clinic at Trillium Hospital (which, thank goodness, is open on holidays and after hours).
The doctor there gave us the best news – his ear canal was not affected at all. BUT, as for the bruising and swelling, he confirmed that a hematoma had started to form in his ear, and careful observation would be crucial over the next few days to determine if drainage was required. Follow up with our pediatrician within 24 hours was mandatory.
The next day, I brought Ryder to our pediatrician, who once again went through the steps to ensure Ryder’s hearing was perfect and examined the hematoma. And then he said something that completely blew me away:
“Ryder needs to see a plastic surgeon,” he advised. “He’s so young, we don’t want to take any chances, and he would be the one to perform the incision and drainage if necessary.”
(I must admit that at this point, I briefly wondered if I could ask for a 2 for 1 deal on an ear drainage for baby and boob lift for mommy. I know, bad mommy.)
So the next day I took him to a world-renowned plastic surgeon (there were a few hotties in his office but I couldn’t help wondering what they had had done) and I daresay Ryder was his youngest patient in the waiting room.
The surgeon’s verdict? He didn’t have to “slice it open” (his words, not mine) just yet; we’d still be on daily watch. He wanted to see if the hematoma would resolve by itself without drainage, because the cartilage felt firm and not squishy (as in the case with future cauliflowers), and he didn’t want to take the risk of secondary infection by performing an operation that wasn’t strictly warranted.
I met the surgeon at the hospital two days later, and arrived with newfound optimism due to Ryder’s ear taking a dramatic turn for the better. The swelling had resolved by about 50%, and the ear started turning blackish-yellow, a sure sign the bruising was on it’s way out too. For the first time in 5 long days, we received confirmation that drainage was no longer the expected prognosis. Woo hoo!
Today, his ear is still bruised… but not so noticeable unless you look for it. A less angry red line is still visible across most of his upper ear, but 95% of the swelling has resolved and it sticks out only minutely. Who knew a simple tumble could bring about so many complications?
But I digress… little boys do spend their fair share of time in doctor’s offices.
I couldn’t bear to take a picture of Ryder with his ear swollen… but here he is on Day 5 of recovery. As you can see, the injury hasn’t affected his demeanor at all!
|RYDER, DAY 5