Sunday, May 24, 2009

Are my kids as messed up as me?

A while ago, the kids had physical exams. One of the topics that evidently came up in that exam was my WPW and as a result, the kids all had orders for EKGs. Saturday morning, I took them to the hospital for the EKGs.

Like most Saturdays, there was swim practice, so my wife and I came up with a plan how we would get all three kids to the hospital and swim practice. When I woke up, I realized that it was a dumb plan and would require 3 separate trips to the hospital, during the other kids' practices. So, with less than 15 minutes before we needed to depart I woke up Kid 3 and then realized that I should bring Kid 2 as well. She only had 5 minutes between wake up and depart.

I rifled through my wife's purse and found the medical cards, got everybody and their swimbags in my MINI and we were off. Kid 1 was dropped at practice and we headed to the hospital for the quick EKG and then some breakfast (and coffee for me). We got to there and Diana in admitting asked if I had the Doctor's orders; which I didn't. I assumed that they had been faxed ahead of us.

Diana checked her computer and then called the EKG lab to see if there were orders; there were none. About the same time, Heather had woken up and called me because she couldn't find any of the kids. After letting her know that I had them all, she told me that the orders were on her clipboard on the kitchen island. Arggh. Foiled by a small blue piece of paper.

So, before getting dressed and coming, she used some free e-faxing service and sent 1 of the orders to Diana. It came through, but it was entirely unreadable. The small page was blown up to full page and with the blue background it was useless. Foiled by a little blue piece of paper again. Heather concluded that she would drive into the hospital - only about a 30 minute drive, but not one that she was expecting to have to make.

By this time, the EKG tech had come out and since the orders were on the way and EKGs are fast, she decided that they would just give us the EKGs now and we'd take care of the rest of it when the orders arrived.

The four of us, the tech, Kid 2 and 3 and me went to Echo Room Two for the test. The tech asks who wants to go first, and Kid 2 and 3 simultaneously point at the other one and offer up their sibling as the trial run. I tell them it is quick and easy and neither of them budge. I don't think that either of them were scared, but just being humorous about it.

The tech proposed that I go as a demo run which was okay by me. In about 3 minutes, I had a new EKG. As expected, my EKG showed abnomal results, but it reassured the kids that they wouldn't get electrocuted.

Kid 3 hopped up on the bed for his test and it was quick and easy. Kid 2 got up on the bed and while the tech was placing the leads, Kid 2 leaned forward and whispered in her ear. I overheard and he said, "It hurts." But he explained that he was referring to pulling the leftover adhesive off afterwards.

Later, Heather and I came back with Kid 1 after his swim practice. While the tech was hooking him up, Heather did make a zapping sound after two leads were connected. I was thinking it, with Kids 2 and 3, but she did it to Kid 1. Thats how we roll.

So, results...

Kid 1 and 3 were normal and Kid 2 was abnormal. Thats what the machine said. But it needs to be read by a professional and we'll see what they say.

Its pretty amazing, but even hearts are fixable these days. When I was first diagnosed, it was one of those conditions that you just lived with and changed your lifestyle as things went on.

So, thats what we do. Just keep going.


imhelendt said...

Steve was one of the very first few hundred patients who received a catheter ablation for WPW. This wasn't a disease you just lived with- back in the day, they cracked the chest and did open heart surgery to repair it. I know ALL ABOUT this nightmare. ;) Son #1 has had a few EKGs that aren't entirely normal but aren't entirely abnormal either. WPW hits at puberty. More than likely, without symptoms, they're going to wait and see with PB. Although she'll probably get a holter monitor to wear. That's fun too. ;) Hugs.

Melissa said...

So, they weren't kidding when tehy said, "The best-laid plans of mice and men often go awry." That was quite a morning! :)

I don't know about WPW, but I know how freakish it is to have your kid in a hospital setting! Sending you hugs, and lots of prayers!