Sunday, October 25, 2009

E.Coli 0157:H7

As I posted earlier, Charlotte acquired e.coli 0157:h7 (the particular strain). And I have learned a lot about this bacteria.... like we all could be walking around with it & not know it?! Charlotte most likely acquired it through food, but its like a needle in a haystack since we dont eat gr. beef & we havent been to a fast food restaurant in a long time.

She got this on October 1st and as we round the corner to the end of the month, Charlotte is doing great. She's actually bouncing off the walls & we have done more art projects than I care to count :) HAHAHA! However, she still has this in her system & therefore, is not allowed back at preschool & if we are in contact with friends, they are fully aware (so they are ok with us being around them). If we go to someone's house, I go with Charlotte to the potty, I wipe her & we both wash our hands together.

I got a call from the Washington State Health Dept on this week & we were on the phone for an hour going over specifics of where I shop, what she ate from September 24th - October 1st. My brain HURT from trying to remember. I do keep dinners logged in my calendar, but lunches... hoping I answered correctly.

And the reason they wanted so many details is that Charlotte's e.coli 0157.H7 matches the genotype that a grouping in our county presented in September. Charlotte fits that outbreak. So now they are trying to find the commonality in order to find the needle in the haystack.

We went in for a poop test on Wednesday & Thursday & by Friday the Dr. called & said, "its positive... again." I was soooooo frustrated!!! Our Dr. is going to consult with the other Ped's in his group to ask, "at this stage, can we give her an antibiotic?"

An antibiotic at the beginning would have done more damage than good. As I understand it, an anti-biotic can actually help promote the bad bacteria growth & have it grow rapidly, thus causing more damage.

The Dr. said that people can live with this in their bodies for a long time. Acutally people can be walking around with it & not even know it. And he's not sure about the antibiotic, asking, "because is she sick?" and the answer is no, she's boucing off the walls. That's where he's conflicted.

Where do we go from here? Not sure, will talk to the Dr. again this week after he consults with his collegues. And will continue to do art projects at home. Charlotte is a natural homebody & plays FANTASTICALLY by herself so yay for that. But she does miss her friends at school.

Silver linings in this are: our food in our house has been an evolution & this just bumped it up a notch. "Clean eating" & "eating simply" is taking more affect. Searching out & finding the organic farmers in my area & driving to them to find the fresh eggs & the organic apples has been FUN & yummy! Our meat consumption has lowered and looking at "Foster Farms ground turkey" makes me nauseuas only because I have no idea what "ground turkey" is. I now buy from Whole Foods who ground it just that day & can tell me that its "ground turkey breast." YUM & whew. A relief to know where the turkey came from (they advertise the actual farm) & what part of the animal it is.

Monday, October 19, 2009

BIG SUCCESS!!!


Thanks to everyone who came & were there in spirit at the 2009 CARRA Costume Ball!

What a blast!!! Over 350 people participated
& we raised over $4k to support Friends Of CARRA!CARRA stands for Childhood Arthritis and Rheumatology Research Alliance. It is made up of 246 pediatric rheumatologists from across the U.S. and Canada. They have come together to collaborate and conduct high quality clinical research to find the answers to the many questions about childhood rheumatic disease, such as: What is the cause? What are the best treatments? What are the long term outcomes? How can damage be avoided? What is the cure? CARRA's doctors are working together to find the answers.

CARRA is the group of pediatric rheumatologists. We are the "Friends of CARRA" and now the participants in the Costume Ball are too! The funds raised at the CARRA Costume Ball is going to make a difference in the lives of the over 300,000 children in the US living with arthritis. Friends of CARRA is a totally volunteer group. No salaries. No overhead. All of the money that is raised goes straight to CARRA to fund research. The website is http://www.friendsofcarra.com/.
This is us....
This is why we do it....
Our donation link is still open if you are interested in donating to the CARRA Costume Ball: http://www.carracostumeball.com / go to tickets & you can donate! THANK YOU!

Thursday, October 15, 2009

CARRA Costume Ball - 2nd Annual!


The 2nd annual CARRA Costumbe Ball is Saturday, October 17th. A family fun benefit for Childhood Arthritis & Rheumatology Research Alliance. All ages will have fun dancing to the DJ run music, winning prizes playing fun games & participating in group dances! Come in costume & have your family picture taken by Lara Blair Images for $20 (donation going to CARRA) & receive a free 5x7!

Last year brought approximately 350 people to Camas to support the 300,000 children with arthritis. And last year after the event, over 100 families said "Ahhhh...."as their children fell right to sleep coming home after a GREAT night of getting their boogies out!!
Join us this year in person or in spirt by registering or donating online at http://www.carracostumeball.com (click tickets). There's a great raffle & registering online will ensure you 5 free raffle tickets, which are a $1 a piece at the event. Several hotel stays around Oregon are offered, an American Girl doll, an autographed Nolan Ryan baseball... so much more!

Monday, October 12, 2009

2 weeks on, 2 weeks off

For Charlotte who's been battling arthritis in her eyes since November of 2007, the meds she's on sometimes get a big ole pointer finger BY ME!

She's on some good meds to keep the arthritis away. However.... being on an immune suppressant like Methotrexate PLUS a TNF inhibitor (protein killer) like Remicade, puts a BIG OLE TARGET on Charlotte's back for "all things bad" (my professional verbiage for bacteria & viruses).

Only 2 weeks of Fall routines: going to preschool & attending ballet & BAM....

E.Coli 0157:H7. No idea how she contracted it, tried tracing it like a needle in a haystack but you know how that goes....

Started out with bloody diarrhea. Then the cramping & going potty every 30-45 minutes for 48 hours (no sleep on a Friday / Saturday night - but thankful it was a weekend!). And 72 hours later we find out the diagnosis.

"Cautious observations" is what the pediatrician wanted us doing with continued daily check ins from her pediatric rheumatologist. We were schooled on what COULD happen, the kidney failure that's associated with this particular strain of e.coli, and so we were on high alert watching, observing, judging, analyzing.

And when timing came for the possibility of HUS (kidney failure associated with 0157:H7), we took that turn & HUGGED THE CURVES & came out full force forward!!! Breathing a deep sigh of relief, and a great amount of appreciation.

WHEW!!!!!!!!!!! 1 week + 3 days later, we are now getting the poo analyzed by the labs (county public health says 2 negative samples in 24 hours is required to head back to preschool) & hope that we are getting back to school by next week's pumpkin patch field trip.

Nothing to see here folks, keep moving on..... lets get BACK on track!

ROWR! She's ready to keep FIGHTING & Carpe Diem!