Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Classic toddler asthma signs easily overlooked

Yes it's true that even your humble RT and lifelong asthmatic can over look the classic signs of asthma.  My 3 YO HM woke at 2:30 in the morning, was agitated, coughing, and was annoying her father.  He even yelled at her, because he thought she was simply caught in that flux between sleep and reality.

He finally set her back in bed and decided she'd eventually fall asleep.  He hopped into his own bed, and his wife said, "Did you give her her pulmicort before bed last night.  Sometimes she has asthma when she doesn't get it."

Bingo!  He could have slapped himself up alongside the head.  He carried the little girl to the living room, set her in the recliner, prepared a breathing treatment with pulmicort and ventolin, and gave it to her by blowby.  Within minutes her breathing was easy and she was sound asleep.  

He set her back in bed and not a peep was heard the rest of the night.  This was a perfect real life example of how even the most expert of asthma experts can overlook the classic signs of asthma.

 It's a also a quintessential example of how important it is that everyone responsible for a child know about the signs of asthma.  When one person misses the signs, perhaps the other will pick up on them.  

I suppose it's also a classic example of the importance of good teamwork.  Regardless, she is doing great today, that little asthma girl.  No longer will we be able to skip a dose of pulmicort.  

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