Saturday, May 21, 2011

The shock of the poo...

This week, we've taken a step backwards in our war with poo. We are officially losing the war with poo. We are being defeated by poo in the war with poo.

I do not like poo. Poo is not my friend. I would not invite poo to my house for a sleep-over. Poo stinks.

Despite this, in the last two weeks, I have seen a lot of poo. On top of this, poo has chosen to invite its friend vomit without my permission (which I would have withheld, by the way). To be fair, this wasn't completely unexpected, but it's definitely an unpleasant turn of events.

Doctor Poo put Billy on a long course of osmotic laxatives to try and regulate the action of his bowel. Laxatives are generally likely to lead to more poo, and these fellas definitely did their job. They didn't deliver pleasant poo, either, if there is such a thing. It was a lot of defiantly unpleasant poo. The drunken footballer of poo.

There was a lot of other improvement associated with the actions of Doctor Poo, so we accepted the unpleasant poo as a consequence of improvement. I was going to say we 'sucked it up', but I decided against it. Not a mental mage I want to take to bed with me tonight. Let's just say, we had an uneasy truce with the poo.

Along with the long, thin, rivers of poo, Billy has been randomly vomiting after taking the laxatives. Five times in two weeks, not long after taking the 'salad water' (Billy hates salad, the laxatives are dissolved in water, therefore the medicine will heretofore be known as 'salad water'), Billy was struck with sudden stomach pain, a wave of fever and then delivered a giant hurl. As soon as the hurl was done, the pain and the fever were gone.

Early this week, Billy had an awesome playdate with some beautiful friends. It went so well, we had another one the next day. Longtime readers will know what's coming next - Billy got sick. For whatever reason (immune dysfunction, bad luck, karma for my teenage annoying-ness), Billy + other kids = illness. So, the second half of this week involved a slow decline into throat infection. Along with the random hurls, we were in quite a state by Friday.

Dr Murphy's Law says, 'on the day you need a doctor that knows your kid, said doctor  or doctors will be resolutely unavailable'. And so it was that Friday was the day when we needed to call in the medical cavalry. A replacement GP talked to a replacement GI and x-rays were ordered.

Poor old Billy, surfing waves of pain-nausea-fever, handled an abominal x-ray and ultrasound like a seasoned champion (thanks to the staff at Chatswood Radiology... seriously amazing folk). No obstructions, no odd bowel pathology, no reason for the pain or the vomit. No reason beyond the throat infection he was clearly fighting...

Hmmm... WTF?

Then, on Friday evening someone clever asked whether Billy had a problem with lactose. He, like many autistic kids, does indeed have a problem with dairy products. From around the time when his language stalled, he would randomly hurl after drinking cow's milk. He would also get very constipated if he had a lot of dairy. We haven't done allergy testing, and we should add it to the list of wallet emptiers, but we did make the decision to replace dairy with calcium supplements and a high non-dairy calcium diet. The random hurls stopped, and the constipation lessened slightly. So yeah, we feel like he might have an issue with dairy.

And the laxative he was given by Dr Poo is not intended for the lactose intolerant.

We stopped the laxative, and our relationship with poo deteriorated even further. I'm just going to say, this weekend has been one where we are grateful to not have a massive social life. People might be scared away by the fact that parts of our house smell like the gates of hell. We are very grateful to the inventor of the washing machine.

As with so many things in this autism game, it's like unravelling a ball of spaghetti. What caused what? Which thing came first? What's 'just autism' and what's approaching catastrophe? Is there a difference? Does anyone actually know?

All I know is that we are counting the hours until we can phone Dr Poo and see what he thinks. We will also be buying a bunch of new underpants.

I am thinking of buying camouflage undies (despite my philosophical objections) as a tribute to the poo wars. Or maybe, some flowery ones to give the poo the idea that we, together, are one with the universe. Or maybe just some plain white underpants which I will remove from my son, place on the end of a stick and wave, surrender style, in the wind.

After they've been washed, of course (or we may have even fewer friends).


Di said...

Sorry, sorry, sorry :( :(

imawestie said...

OMG. I would have thought Dr Poo would have asked more lactosey questions.

I'm also very happy you found something more definitive than my random Dr Google result to say "don't mix Osmolax® with the lactose intolerant".

Until this reared its' head though, you seemed to be on the right track... so with luck a non-lactose-derived med?

Or once the vomit has been forced to retreat a bit, his food experiments may help you to do away with the laxative all together. Here's hoping hey?

Dana Meijler said...

I feel for you. I hope that Dr. Poo will have some answers for you soon.

Big hugs!

Jayne said...

Buggery, I'm with Imawestie and would have stupidly thought Dr Poo would have covered this possibility.
Hope the poops get sorted for everyone's sake.
Febreeze or water soluble lavender oil diluted in water in spray bottle - works wonders.