So what does that make us?

May 16, 2007

I took Abby to the GI doctor today to talk about, and hopefully prevent or at least curtail her vomiting episodes. After she was hospitalized in October (she vomited for 2 days straight despite IV anti-nausea medicine and fluids, and ended up with a ton of air in her bowel that almost necessitated a tube through her nose into her stomach), I researched and researched and figured out what the heck she has — cyclic vomiting syndrome. As I’ve written here before, once she starts, she just can’t stop — she’ll go for 15 hours, easily — vomiting every 15 minutes. Needless to say, it’s awful.

After much wrangling with the previous pediatrician’s office over this and other issues, we started seeing a new pediatrician in March. And she, like I, thought Abby needed to see a specialist.

Which we did today.

And guess what? By God, the child has cyclic vomiting syndrome! I say this with a huge degree of sarcasm, because it’s a major Itoldyousowhydidn’tyoulistentomeinthefirstplace? kind of situation. And it has taught me that often I am the best diagnostician my child has. The best advocate, for sure. It gives me the confidence to follow my gut, to do my own research, to push for what I believe is needed for my child. So…cool.

At the risk of completely going off track with a reference that few will probably understand, I want to explain the title of this post. Anyone watch the series Firefly in its too-brief television in 2002? Think sci-fi western set 500 years in the future. But don’t let that scare you away, as it did me, despite Tim telling me that he thought I would love it. And, oh, love it I do. It is one of the richest explorations of fantastic characters I have ever seen on television. And it’s a crying shame that Fox couldn’t develop an audience for a show of such outstanding quality. So my recommendation: rent it, borrow it from the library, go out and BUY the box set. It is that good. Really.

But anyway, during one scene, the main character, Malcolm Reynolds and his second-in-command, Zoe, are rescuing some of their crew members from certain (and somewhat ridiculous) death. Mal says to her, “So what does that make us?”

“Big damn heroes, sir,” she replies.

“Ain’t we just?”

For some odd reason this scene came to my mind today as the doctor confirmed, quite kindly and graciously, what I already knew. So what does that make me?

Big damn hero.

Ain’t I just?


7 Responses to “So what does that make us?”

  1. Deneen said

    So so glad you followed your instinct on that vomiting thing for Abby. She is lucky to have you for a mom. You may now sign your documents “Beth Koruna, BDH.”

    And, as for Firefly…never heard of it, but it sounds a lot like another show I caused to go off the air by raving to people about it. It was called Earth 2, and Tim Curry played a very dastardly role, skulking around calling children “Poppet.”

  2. Adam Smith said

    Cyclical Vomiting Syndrome is a non-entity. They call it CVS because they have not the faintest idea what your child has. This is like seeing a lion and calling it a cat. Get a better paediatrician. CVS has a cause in most cases – you just need a doc who can really use his/her head. Medications are available to stop the vomiting

  3. Beth Koruna said

    Deneen — the tv shows you are not responsible for taking off the air, Tim and I are…and heaven forfend that we ever watch the SAME show, because then it’s truly doomed.

    Adam — Actually, studies have been done to show that there is a matrilineal mitochondrial connection that may well be a cause of cvs…but regardless, the GI doctors are doing tests to rule out any anatomical problems with my daughter and to rule out any other diseases (i.e. liver, Celiac’s disease). But since her only trigger appears to be a typical stomach virus, which then produces excessive and violent vomiting, our goal is to prevent her from getting to that point. Indeed, she has been on several medications to stop the vomiting, which work with mixed results.

  4. marlee Matheson said

    Hi – My son got CVS at 19 and now he is 27. It is destroying his life. In order for him to stop vomiting he has to use a drug called Stadol ( it is a nasal spray). It works. his vomiting stops, but it is an opiate, and addictive. It knocks him out for several hours and he wakes up feeling OK, but the vomiting and severe pain in his stomach alway comes back. If you could find anything that can prevent the episodes from occuring – then that would make you a true hero.

  5. Jenn said

    My husband was diagnosed with CVS in 2006 after eight hospitalizations in a year span for vomiting and severe pain. Since the diagnosis, with the help of an understanding doctor and daily medication, he’s been able to abort most of his attacks and has had much less severe attacks overall. We still have his blood work and other tests done periodically to make sure nothing new has shown up.

    I highly recommend the CVSA message board as a place to find out what triggers other people’s attacks and tips on aborting them. Hot showers have been a miracle for my husband, along with Benadryl. Anyway, I’m rambling. My eyes just perked up when my Google Alerts showed a listing for CVS. My heart goes out to Abby … Best of luck.

  6. Tim said

    Click on my name for a link to a Youtube excerpt from the Firefly episode in question.

    Then, rush out and get yourself a copy of the whole series. It’s that good.

  7. Beth Koruna said

    Marlee and Jenn — thanks for your comments. I will pray for your son and husband, respectively. Marlee — have you looked at Fleisher’s protocol on the CVSA website? It did help terminate Abby’s last episode. Jenn — interesting about the showers. Warm baths can help my daughter (if she’s not already way into the episode). The good thing about all this discussion is that we ARE finding some success (even if it’s small at times) in helping the people we love. Thanks guys — good luck.

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