Saturday, July 6, 2013

We Survived Our First Stomach Bug: What We Learned

    On Wednesday night, we went to go check Boaz's sugar and change his Dexcom Sensor.  I like to change his sensor while he is sleeping because he usually doesn't even know it happened.  Well, this Wednesday night, he was already awake.  He wanted to be held so Josh picked him up.  Within minutes, Boaz threw up.  I knew the protocol for vomiting once- give fluids, check sugar, check ketones* ect.- but he threw up four times in a half hour!  He is in diapers so that makes checking ketones via a urine strip almost impossible.  I called the Endocrinologist and she told me to just keep an eye on him and watch for signs of ketoacidosis (lethargy, dehydration,  stomach pains*).  We are 15min from our hospital ER but I don't completely trust it, because it is not a children's hospital and we've had bad experiences before.  We are an hour away from the nearest children's hospital and that's where I planned on going.  It made me kinda nervous having such a far drive if we needed to go, but thankfully I have a great support group on Facebook with mommas all over the country with young children all with diabetes.  I was able to talk through my concerns and get some advice about whether or not to go to the ER.  We decided to wait a little while since we had Zofran in the house, and thankfully, we were able to avoid the ER.

 Here's what I learned about dealing with diabetes and stomach bugs: 

Zofran is your best friend.  If we would not have had it in the house already, we would have had to go to the ER. Vomiting in diabetes can be very dangerous.  He can lose vita carbs and fluids which can make his sugar drop dangerously low.  When he threw up the first time, his sugar was only 76.  That made me very nervous.  I was able to get some sugar in him before he threw up again and thankfully it brought him up.  The Zofran worked instantly and he did not vomit any more after that.  

Gatorade is a great sugary, replenishing drink.  His doctor said to give him sugary drinks if his sugar is below 180**.  Thankfully my sister left some clear Gatorade (I'm so glad it was clear!) in my fridge, and of course Boaz loved that!  Gatorade was the only thing I could get him to drink, so I will probably buy a bottle to keep in the pantry in case he gets sick again.  
He always needs some kind of insulin in his system.  Ok, this one I already knew, but this is the first time it has applied to us.  I lowered his Lantus (long-acting insulin) dose by 1/2u and did not give him any Humalog (rapid-acting insulin) at all.  I did these adjustments on my own because he was sick on July 4th, but I did run them by the nurse the next day and she said that was perfect.  Thankfully he did not go low or high the whole time he was sick!

So, the stomach bug was a scary experience (and did I mention Josh was sick during this too!), but I think I know exactly what to do next time.  

*These are not extensive lists.  Be sure to talk to your doctor for you own sick day routine, or if you are concerned about ketoacidosis.  

**This number is not general.  This was the specific number we were given for Boaz.  Talk to your doctor for specific numbers, ranges, and insulin doses for you.**

*****This post is not meant to take the place of your doctor or to be used for diagnosis.  It is only to be used as a resource.  If you are concerned or suspect diabetes, talk to your doctor.*****

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