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The Final Verdict On the Sickness Thing

It’s been a wild ride this week: Maddie’s had a severe case of hives come and go – and come again on Wednsday, only to leave again Wednesday night. She’s had horrible stomach cramps all week, throwing up Tuesday night and being hungry and wanting to eat, but feeling the pains intensify every time she put water in her stomach. As a result, she’d eaten nothing since Monday morning and could barely walk.

I’ve spent the week thinking the hives were a side effect of the flu shot, and going back and forth on the stomach thing: was it a virus? Was it part of the flu shot? If this was all a reaction to the flu shot, would next year’s flu shot be high risk? Should I have insisted on getting the exact flu shot I wanted, and not the one they had when they’d run out of the one I wanted?

By Thursday morning I’d worked myself into a fine case of Mommy Worry, with a nice helping of Mommy Guilt on the side. People are dying here in Texas of the flu – relatives of friends of mine – so the flu and the shot are no small topics of conversation around here.

So when Maddie crawled to the couch Thursday morning I called our pediatrician. I had absolutely no hope that she could do anything to make Maddie feel better, but I wanted her to see Maddie, see the symptoms, so she could help guide me in next year’s vaccination decision-making process.

Guess what? It wasn’t an allergic reaction at all.

Our dermatologist had pegged it as a reaction to the flu, diagnosing Maddie with allergen-based urticaria, or hives. Our pediatrician said that it was definitely urticaria, but caused by a virus, not the vaccine: she’d seen a dozen cases just this week of kids exactly like Maddie. No fever, no chills or aches, but strong stomach cramps and hives.

So there you go.

And after a long talk about the vaccine, it looks like we’re fine with the flu vaccine after all. My pediatrician’s one of the more cautious ones here, doing delayed vaccine schedules, and she knows exactly what type of flu vaccine she wants to give Maddie and feels quite confident she’ll be fine.

And in even BETTER news, mid-morning Maddie asked for a piece of toast. Then another piece of toast, with a scrambled egg on it. Five eggs later, it was clear she was just fine. So Maddie’s headed to school today!

My girl feels better, and the Mommy Guilt is lifted.



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