Warning: this blog contains graphic medical photos….
Gabe was doing pretty good. The liviaone probiotic spray was really helping to clear up his skin. He was still very much still going through TSW (topical steroid withdrawal) but still able to get out and enjoy life in a limited capacity.
Then last Monday he started not feeling well. Very tired, very irritable. By Tuesday he was getting a bumpy rash and was feverish. We assumed it was a staph infection. When it didn’t respond to our treatment at home, my husband took him in to the emergency room. We got a quick staph diagnosis and antibiotics and went home.
He was way too sick to go anywhere for fireworks on Tuesday.
Sometime mid Wednesday we realized that he wasn’t responding to the antibiotics. The rash of little red bumps had spread all over his body.
My Mom came over and suggested it might by measles, which I quickly dismissed. Later I realized I knew very little about measles so I do some quick googling. I realized that Gabe’s rash looked very similar to the typical measles rash.
He also had the other symptoms of headache, sore throat and tongue, fever, etc…
We brought him in to urgent care Wednesday night. The took swabs and samples and said we would know by Friday if it were measles or not.
By Friday, Gabe was still in rough shape. The measles plus his underlying TSW made for a hellish week for everyone. Gabe’s skin was literally peeling off. A thick layer of dead skin would come right off to reveal still-too raw red skin underneath. You can see this on his feet…
This obviously involved a lot of pain for him- on top of the other symptoms of measles and his TSW flaring.
Yesterday I brought him in to see a pediatricion to get him something stronger for his pain. Ibuprofen wasn’t cutting it. When I got to the clinic the ladies at the front desk all made knowing eye with contact with each other and backed away from the desk. Great, Gabe is the “measles kid” and everyone at the clinic has been talking about it. He had a mask on and they were well over 15 feet away but the reacted as though I had just rolled up with a zombie-leper in that little child sized wheelchair.
We got Gabe some tramadol and vitamin A. But at this point we still don’t have answers. None of the four doctors who have seen him this week have ever seen measles before. The state health department has taken over his samples and testing so that is delaying getting our answers until Monday or even Tuesday.
How did Gabe get the measles? We don’t know for sure yet (we don’t even know 100% if it IS measles…) but just a few days prior to all this I had read about documented cases of people getting sick after coming in contact with someone who had recently been vaccinated with a live virus. Gabe had been around a young child who just got her MMR shot in the days leading up to his illness. It’s very possible that the child was shedding the measles virus and Gabe was susceptible due to his weakened state.
The Doctor told me that they will be able to tell if his strain of measles is wild or cultivated. Basically if he got it through vaccine-shedding or by a random encounter with measles. How has he been handling this? Not well. It was a huge setback, not just physically but psychologically. For a little boy who’s been through so much. This was just too much. Several times, when the pain was really bad, he talked about just wanting to die so he didn’t have to be suffering anymore.
As a parent there just isn’t much worse.
We are holding to our faith and the power of prayer. We tell Gabe continuously that he is going to get better. There is a light at the end of the tunnel. That God loves him and is going to cause all this suffering to work for his good.
He’s still very much in the thick of it so if you could take a moment and pray for his complete healing, that would mean so much to us.