February 28, 2009


The scariest moment in my life happened about 24 hours ago. Early yesterday morning, my Alden had a fever so we took him to our GP at Kaiapoi Medical Centre immediately. After he was given fever medicine, he got better and seemed to recover. I didn't send him to playschool because hubby was at home to keep an eye on him. So as planned, I went to campus and attended a few seminars. After a hectic day in campus, I got home at about 6.50 pm and immediately checked on Alden. Hubby told me that Alden had taken his medication and was being a bit cranky while I was gone. His temperature was still going up and down despite taking the fever medicine. Wanting to comfort him, I put on his favourite Thomas and friends cd and sat with him. After a while, he insisted that I carry him so I held him in my arms and stroked his hair. When he was lying on my shoulder, I noticed that his eyes were dropping shut. It was then that both hubby and I noticed that Alden went limp and was shutting his eyes. Alarmed, both of us yelled "Alden! Alden!". He was not responding to our voices. He went pale and that's when he started seizing: his body was involuntarily jerking and his lips turned blue. Hubby gave him CPR and at the same time screaming "Let's go to the clinic now!". I took the car keys and hubby quickly got in the car with Alden in his arms. On the way to the clinic, hubby kept telling me that the seizure has stopped and that he was okay but I was too panicky to listen. I was not convinced and sped to the clinic only to discover that it was already closed. Hubby dialed 111 for me and I told the operator our situation. The operator got our details and told me that as long as he was breathing we should just wait for the ambulance to come. About 10 minutes later, what seemed like an eternity, the paramedics arrived. At that time, Alden has stabilised but was still pale. After assessing him, they decided that it was best to go to the hospital. Panicked, I quickly dumped Alden's clothes, diapers and milk formula into a plastic bag and got in the car. Alden and hubby were already in the ambulance and I had to tail them from behind. When we got to the hospital, about 20 minutes later, Alden started being more responsive. I was so relieved. At this point, his temperature was 39.8°. One of the nurses told us to take his clothes off to get his temperature down. Covering him up seemed to aggravate the fever. We were then registered by four different nurses at the emergency ward before we were finally brought to the children ward. There, we were taken to Room 6 to wait for the doctor. A few moments later, she came to the room and started asking questions. She then took Alden's temperature, checked his ears, lungs, took his blood pressure and got him to wear a urine bag for some urine samples. After the examination, Alden's heartbeat and temperature were monitored closely. (This photo here shows Alden's wrist tag at the hospital) After 2 hours, another pediatrician came to explain what really happened. According to her, Alden had a febrile seizure and it is relatively common in toddlers from the age of 6 months to five years. When a fever gets really high, some children respond by having convulsions. While I was relieved to hear this, I was still shaken and couldn't help feeling like a lousy mother. The doctor told us that according to studies done, fever medication does not stop young children from having febrile seizure. “It just happens” she said. She explained that the reason behind the sudden-high rising fever was probably due to the ear infection he had. This was discovered by our GP earlier that morning but she did not make a big fuss out of it. Knowing the cause of the fever made it easier for the doctor to diagnose him. Alden was then given a dosage of fever medication and we were advised to give him lots of fluid. We were also told that children that have had one febrile seizure are at a higher risk of having another – however, it may never happen again. Though Alden had somehow got better, we were advised to spend the night at the hospital so they could monitor him. At 2am, Alden woke up feeling better and his fever subsided. We spent 3 more hours at the hospital just to make sure that he was really okay. At 5.15 am, we checked out from the hospital and finally headed home. For hubby and I, this was the most terrifying thing we had ever experienced. Seeing Alden having the seizure and not knowing how to handle it is the worst feeling in the world. The experience was so traumatic that it took me some time to digest and realise that he was really okay. I'm praying that this never ever happens again, but if it does, now I'll know what to do. *I am so thankful to God that his seizure didn't last more than a minute.He is now okay and has since recovered from fever. I leave you with a description of the seizure Alden had experienced yesterday. It is comforting to know that febrile seizure is medically harmless and has no long-term effects on children. This is taken from www.healthnewsflash.com/conditions/febrile_seizures What are Febrile Seizures in Children? Febrile seizures are convulsions brought on by a fever in infants or small children. During a febrile seizure, a child often loses consciousness and shakes, moving limbs on both sides of the body. Most febrile seizures last a minute or two, although some can be as brief as a few seconds while others last for more than 15 minutes. The majority of children with febrile seizures have rectal temperatures greater than 102 degrees F. Most febrile seizures occur during the first day of a child's fever. Children prone to febrile seizures are not considered to have epilepsy, since epilepsy is characterized by recurrent seizures that are not triggered by fever. How common are febrile seizures? Approximately one in every 25 children will have at least one febrile seizure, and more than one-third of these children will have additional febrile seizures before they outgrow the tendency to have them. Febrile seizures usually occur in children between the ages of 6 months and 5 years and are particularly common in toddlers. Children rarely develop their first febrile seizure before the age of 6 months or after 3 years of age. Are febrile seizures harmful? Although they can be frightening to parents, the vast majority of febrile seizures are harmless. There is no evidence that febrile seizures cause brain damage. Large studies have found that children with febrile seizures have normal school achievement and perform as well on intellectual tests as their siblings who don't have seizures. Even in the rare instances of very prolonged seizures (more than 1 hour), most children recover completely


Carpe Diem 211 said...

Oh my .. I am so so sorry to dear about it dear. So happy that Alden is feeling better now. Alex and you must be terrified. I can imagine how you must have felt.

My mom told me that I had a seizure till I turned blue as well when I was a baby .. due to fever and asthma. SO it's common the doctor is right.

Don't you worry ok. He will be running and lining his trucks and cars in no time.

debrajill said...

kak..Hugs~ you doing great as a mother..dont worry..this is wat practically every mother's worry..thanK God Alden is ok now... thats what important..and thank God, kak and koko are fine too..Hugs and KIsses~!! kiss den2 for us ok...will be praying for you guys here! love you all..

Caroline said...

Wat a scary night for you all. Glad den-den is now ok..

Ash.P said...

ohh..im glad he is better now.
Im feeling terrified myself reading this blog.
Take care and hope Alden is well soon.