Earlier this week, Nathan had his first visit with the Pediatric Pulmonary doctor that was referred to us by his pediatrician. I never realized how LONG this doctor appointment would be... 2 hours! But, it was long overdue, and my hope is to avoid any 911 or ER visits in the future with our new Asthma Action Plan. At the visit, we spoke to the doctor, and then he sent Nathan over to another office where they did several breathing tests without Albuterol and then with it. The lady that performed these tests gave Nathan a toy to play with while she was giving him the Albuterol through the nebulizer, and it was just a fun picture I had to snap. Too bad its blurry, but I had my Android on me and it doesn't take fantastic pictures. To make a long story short, these tests showed that Nathan does have a little bit of asthma.
Next up, was the allergy test! The doctor gave us a choice, a quick and simple blood draw from the wrist or they would dip rods in different allergens and poke his back (just drops, no needles). I am sure you don't even need to guess which one we chose, as Nathan asked us several times after the doctor left if he was going to take his blood, and that he didn't want that test, he wanted the drops test! As you can see from the photo, Nathan definitely has some allergies. 4 is highest (worse) and 1 was lowest.
He scored 4 on these:
The rest he scored No or 1 on.
This surprised me, because I have a Calico cat at home, and she is almost always downstairs. And, when Nathan plays downstairs or when he handles her, he never seems to break out or itch his eyes. The doctor told me to keep the cat out of Nathan's bedroom.
Next, the doctor gave us an Asthma Action Plan. I love this! It tells you that Nathan should always be in the Green Zone, and the preventative medicines he needs to take every day (Flovent 2x day/night and Singulair).
Then, there is a Yellow Zone, this means he is not at his best and needs to use caution. It says he can use his 'Quick Relief' medicine- the Albuterol in the inhaler or in the nebulizer.
The Red Zone, means you are having an emergency. And, were late in acting possibly. This is the use of stomach muscles, ribs showing when breathing, constant coughing, etc. BOTH kids have been here, and its scary! Also, it says to use the oral steroid at this point.
I am hoping we can avoid RED ZONE and even YELLOW by having Nathan on the daily inhaler AND the Singulair (a chewable pill before bed, every day). So, far these both have helped eliminate his cough.
We go back to see the doctor in August, and he may tone down the medicines then for the Fall, but since April and May are BAD months (ER visits last two years!), he needs to be on all these meds during these Spring months. Wish us luck! Autumn goes to see him next week, I can't wait to get her on a better treatment schedule.