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Do you know what Malignant Hyperthermia is? I know I Didn't

Mrs. Joseph Wood recently commented on her son's susceptibility to Malignant Hyperthermia in a December 9 post "When your travels take unexpected turns God remains faithful!" on her Blog "A Moment with M.O.M." Read the full article.

It was 10:30 on Friday night when we finally pulled into Topeka, Our semi truck took up a row of parking at the local emergency room as we carried baby who was still strapped in his car seat into the hospital. (we found that if we didn't move him and allowed him to remain seated in his car seat his pain was less). It was just a few moments before they called us back. We explained the situation and the testing and the tears began; baby was hurting and that made me hurt. The staff was kind, supportive and did all they could to help baby get comfortable. Finally, the results came back: baby had a spiral hairline fracture of his femur. WHY!? Why did the other hospital miss this? I asked. They explained it was very hard to see but with their new computer system they were able to magnify the film and clearly see the problem. Thank you Lord for leading us to a hospital with this new computer system! Joe and I had a sense of shock; if you had been there to see the fall you would be surprised too. He didn't even hit anything. We asked the doctors how he could have broke it and explained the event to them. The only suggestion they have is that maybe with me watching for his head and picking him up that way we didn't see that his leg was stuck on something and twisted. Whatever the reason, this is where we were and now we had the issue of being put under anesthesia.

Do you know what Malignant Hyperthermia is? I know I didn't before Daniel's last surgery. We were told multiple times, "Daniel is prone for Malignant Hyperthermia, do not ever let anyone put him to sleep without the proper precautions or death can occur." Even with all their precautions and steps take to avoid problems Daniel still had a reaction in his last surgery back in August. I still remember standing there as they all worked with him. His heart raced, his temperature continued to climb, and all I could think is that it was my fault? I know with my head it wouldn't have been but I can't stop feeling that way sometimes.

I was afraid I was being "one of those patients" as I persisted that no one would set the bone in Daniels leg until the last hospital was called for instructions on how to clean the operating room. I would sign no consent form until I was absolutely positive they understood what they were dealing with. I told them, "Sorry isn't going fix it if you mess up. A law suit won't bring my son back. I want to know that everyone is very aware of the situation and taking all the necessary precautions. I don't mind staying another day if we need to so the operating room can be cleaned properly to ensure no residue of medication that could cause my son to deal with MH." After several hours, I spoke with everyone involved, the last hospital Daniel had surgery at was called and instructions were given to the staff we were working with. They took the steps necessary and called in two anesthesiologists to care for Daniel. No surgery would be needed to set the bone but he did have to be put to sleep so they could set and cast the leg.

As I signed the papers and talked to the anesthesiologist he said, "You know I am probably the only one here that has dealt with this before. It's been years since I've seen a case and just last week I had a MH situation and now your son." I replied, "Isn't God good to give you that reminder last week before my son was brought to you today."

Daniel went through the procedure just fine. He had no reaction to the anesthesia like he had the time before. His pain medication was working, his leg and abdomen are now in a cast that leaves just enough room for his feeding tube.


This item filed in the following categories:
  • People Building Awareness
The mission of MHAUS is to promote optimum care and
scientific understanding of MH and related disorders.