Wednesday, 19 October 2016

Ending up in the Children's Hospital

Hospital Room View
I've been quiet on social media for the last few days. That's because we've been in the Children's Hospital here in Brighton since Saturday. Pip was fine last week but I did notice a slight yellow tinge in his eyes. By Saturday, that tinge had increased and his skin had turned slightly yellow too. He also showed some other unusual symptoms. He seemed fine in himself but the changes were worrying. As our usual doctors surgery is closed over the weekend, we made an appointment at the out of hours GP at the hospital. We ended up in the Children's A&E and after taking several blood tests, some of which Pip hated, and seven long hours of waiting around, we were told we would have to stay overnight because Pip had a liver infection. By this time we were all exhausted. Fortunately, we were given a big room on the Children's Ward with toys galore, including a Thomas train and a huge train track so that kept Pip happy. The policy at the hospital is that only one parent can stay overnight so I went home to get some rest and stayed the following night instead. My day didn't end there. My taxi ride home was eventful because the taxi suddenly got a puncture and I ended up walking the rest of the way home at midnight! I didn't sleep very well anyway through worry & returned early the next morning. Pip had to have blood taken every few hours from the cannula is his hand and have his symptoms checked regularly including throughout the night which he didn't like too much, poor little boy. The hand with the cannula in was bandaged up so he could only use one hand. But he did get used to it gradually and we regularly made trips downstairs and outside to the play area to prevent the boredom of staying in one room.

We had to explain his symptoms over and over again to different doctors but I guess that's a good thing as each doctor heard about him directly from us. Certain tests improved over the few days we were in there but Pip's liver is still slightly enlarged. Some tests have come back as negative and we will hopefully have the last result soon. He hasn't been given any medicine because his tests are improving but we do have to be closely monitored by the hospital and that means returning to have regular blood tests.

The staff were all very friendly in the Alexandra and being greeted with a smile makes such a big difference. But, I did become restless being in a hospital room for three days watching test after test and I do feel pretty drained from it all. The blood taking was a bit hit and miss, sometimes it worked, sometimes they couldn't access enough blood & had to press down on Pip's arms which made him agitated. There were lots of tears but mostly he's been such a brave little boy! The Alexandra Hospital has very bright & spacious private rooms with lovely sea views and so many toys (these made a huge difference) but it's still a very clinical environment and of course, it needs to be as there are very sick children on the ward. Pip was and still is chirpy and his blood results have improved slightly so we could come home and return as an out-patient. It was a huge relief to leave but I do feel sad for all the other kids that have to stay in the ward especially those that are there long-term. I read other blogs whose children have spent months in hospital and it must be such a heart-wrenching time. I cannot imagine how difficult it must be.

It's all been a bit of whirlwind these past few days. Pip have never been this ill and his liver infection happened incredibly quickly. The doctors have said he will stay with a yellow tinge for a while but at least he seems his usual self. It is worrying because we still don't know exactly what he has or what caused it but should do soon and fingers crossed he is on the mend.

Thank you to the staff at the Royal Alexandra Children's Hospital. If you'd like to make a donation please visit the Rocking Horse Children's Charity.



  1. Oh how worrying for you - glad he's feeling better now and it sounds like the staff were great.


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