Monday, March 01, 2010

E.T., phone home!

They use this glowing red fingertip thingy to monitor blood oxygenation levels these days. Here is a closeup (ignore the puppy with dangerously dilated pupils):

Here is the broader view (blurred right hand is waving at the fans):

This was during our recent 11:30 pm. visit to our friendly emergency room. Becky went to bed earlier that evening with the beginnings of a cold and progressed at lightning speed to croup so bad she was having trouble breathing and could barely talk. There were some good points, however:
  1. When your kid can't breathe, they see her before any of the other malingering lame-o's in the waiting room AND they don't even ask you for your insurance info! At least not right away.
  2. The hospital we went to has a whole section just for pediatric patients, with smaller beds and cute itty-bitty pediatric catheterization kits (OK, so I'm snoopy like that). Also, some plastic funnels with a wide mesh-covered opening at the bottom. For, you know, catching those kidney stones for your five-year-old. Needless to say I took one and plan to use it for loose-leaf tea. Or something.
  3. They give you free stuffed animals and let you keep the johnny. No wonder heath care costs are THROUGH THE GODDAMN ROOF!
  4. They have a flat-screen TV attached high up on the wall in each cubicle with a little DVD player behind it, and while you're there for two hours of observation, they bring a multiple-page list of DVDs you can request, sort of like a menu at a fancy restaurant but without the faux-leather covers. Becky watched "The Wizard of Oz" while I played with my iPhone.
We went home at 2 a.m. after some steamy epinephrine stuff and oral steroids. She was sick with this cold from hell for the entire subsequent week (e.g., school vacation). BUT! She could suddenly lift the dining room table with one hand!

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