It's been a rough week at Sweetly Voiced.
For those of you following my site infection saga, I am pleased to report that after only one dose of Bactrim DS (a sulfa derivative), the larger area of redness (aka most of my arm) returned to a more normal color.
The heat, the lump, the redness of the area immediately around the site, and the pain and tenderness throughout my arm remain four days later though. I've spent literally hours on the phone between the 3 nurses, 2 clinical specialists, 2 customer service reps, my CDE, etc. I've been chided for not prepping my sites better, encouraged to add this or that pain management topical cream... And I've been driving around town with an ice pack tied to my upper arm with a kitchen towel (which is as ineffective as it sounds). Whether or not it's staph-related remains to be determined, but I think there is no denying it's cellulitis.
I'm not the only one who has been suffering skin woes in this house though. Little Sweetie has had some kind of diaper rash that has persisted for FOUR months. We treated it with rash creams, with benadryl cream, with anti-fungal creams, with cloth diapers and disposable ones, with organic creams and medicinal compounds. We changed detergents, I took mental notes about her diet, I put vinegar in the bathwater, I bleached my cloth diapers, we changed her bath soap and lotion, we dried her more carefully, etc.
Two months ago, her pediatrician said that she might just be a rashy kid and would deal with this until she was potty trained. I wasn't willing to give up so easily and continued through the litany of treatments above. And, through it all, any time she could get her diaper off, she'd scratch. It obviously itched.
My husband finally said that, if it was bothering me so much, I should take her to my dermatologist.
I took her in on Tuesday, described my epic battle of mommy vs rash, and he had me take the diaper off. One look at her and he declared that it was folliculitis - a bacterial infection causing the itching and the bumps throughout the entire diaper region and down her legs, and he prescribed...that's right - Bactrim. And a topical cream called Desonide.
Within 24 hours, her skin looked almost normal. It's odd to see the cheeks of her bottom look like a commercial baby's rather than a teenager with an acne breakout. Her skin is white again, rather than irritated and pink.
I'm relieved, but I'm also frustrated and angry that she suffered so long. The two doctors and two nurse pracs at this pediatric practice should have seen this for what it was, should have tried more treatments, shouldn't have left her to itch. And I should have trusted my mommy instincts enough to drag her to a specialist months ago. This situation only furthers my distrust of general physicians' expertise.
And - speak of the devil - I have an appointment in the morning with my general practitioner to look at my arm again before we go into the weekend. I'll try to be cooperative, but I imagine I'll just attempt to boss him around.