stroke rounds

29 Apr

It’s exactly what it sounds: a team of medical professionals “rounding” (essentially going door-to-door, presenting patients, and working out the plans) on all the stroke patients at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia.  Stroke is not a common pediatric diagnosis, so the fact that we have rounds devoted to this patient population speaks to the unique glimpse of medicine CHOP provides.

I know it’s a rare thing, but that gives me little peace (not that I am the one who should be comforted) when I’m standing four feet from an exhausted mother, holding her whimpering toddler, who is neurologically destroyed.  It’s such a contrast from my happy, well daughter who greets me when I get home.  I’ve never struggled so much to keep it together.

One of our patients suffered a stroke as a result of a disease I didn’t think I would see in this context during my training.  Haemophilus influenza (h. flu) used to be one of the greatest causes of bacterial sepsis/meningitis in young children.  Since the vaccine came on the scene in the 1990s, we’re taught that it’s been virtually eradicated as threat of invasive disease.  Vaccines aren’t 100% affective, which is one of the reasons we rely on herd immunity.  I think I’m pretty granola, but it baffles me when parents choose to not vaccinate their children out of fear of some erroneous association with cognitive difficulties, when they’re essentially putting their children (and those of others) at risk for potentially much more devastating neurological sequelae.

Article on the physician who started this controversy…

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3 Responses to “stroke rounds”

  1. phantomdiver April 29, 2013 at 8:58 pm #

    Meg had Hflu when she was a baby. She could have died; she could have been brain-damaged; she could have lost an eye. Instead, she was in the hospital for ten days, pulling out her IV from all four limbs, poor baby. But I think her brain is okay, more or less. 😉

  2. phantomdiver April 29, 2013 at 9:02 pm #

    But my point is this: Yes. Vaccinate your kids for Hflu. We had never even heard of it when Meg (then Peggy) suddenly developed a high fever and swollen eye in 1984. This vaccine is totally, totally worth it.

  3. Eric Rosoff April 30, 2013 at 6:34 am #

    Thanks for sharing. So sad to think of a little kid having a stroke… This is important tp talk about because http://newsatjama.jama.com/2013/04/15/social-contacts-heavily-influence-parents-vaccination-decisions/

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