Tubes Dude – With apologies to my brother

Newsflash: I have a younger brother. When we were young he was constantly sick…check that, now that we’re old he’s still constantly breaking bones (ask him about his shoulder the next time you see him, go on, ask), so, I guess his ongoing tour of primo emergency rooms in the US continues.

Zeke was ALWAYS getting ear infections. I remember because it was always like, “hey Zeke, you look a little red, wait a minute, don’t pass out from that 105 DEGREE FEVER, oh. wait. It’s just another ear infection…ice him down, he’ll be fine”

Poor little dude. Zeke’s doctors diagnosed his ear problem as “unusual” and “rare” he had “stalactites and stalagmites growing in his eardrums.” I still don’t understand it, but we all had the images of them from his ear x-rays. There they were clear as day…little rock-like formations in my brother’s ears.

I remember the odessey my family took to get Zeke some of those “new fangled” tubes. I think we ended up at Children’s Hospital in Philly for the surgery and how nervous my parents were. And oh I remember the drama if you got the poor kid’s ears wet. The silly putty ear plugs and the no-fun beach time. God. That sucked.

And then, poor Zeke, there was that episode with the He-Man Sword and the eardrum. Word to the wise, it turns out that small boys should NOT be given anything smaller than their ear canal, or their nasal passageways for that matter, because just maybe, said small boy might need to stick that small and pointy object, in their ear, or up their nostril. Now I am not saying I know anybody who has punctured their ear drum with a He-Man sword or visited the hospital TWICE to have popcorn kernels removed from their nose. AND I certainly don’t know someone who still has a tiddlywink stuck way up in their left nostril. Nope, no one that I am related to, no way.

*God, I so want to make an “I HAVE THE POWER” joke and somehow tie it into tiddlywinks but I can’t seem to make it work, thoughts?*

So yes. I know my way around an eardrum. Eustation tubes and I, old pals.

When Jack was on his third ear infection in so many months I pushed for a referral for an ENT. “Wait,” said our pediatrician, “he might outgrow it…” and lo, 3 weeks later the child has another ear infection, a double doozy it seems (his ears are GREEN, no lie) and lickity-split we’re in the ENT offices.

After a faster than the speed of light examination and a hearing test, where we determined that the kid couldn’t hear a damn thing, we ended up with the head of Pediatric ENT surgery at Mount Siani telling me that normally he doesn’t recommend immediate intervention but in this case he’d like to get Jack into surgery in the next 2 weeks. Fine, “sign us up “was my exact response.

April 7th. Tubes dude. Tubes.

2 Replies to “Tubes Dude – With apologies to my brother”

  1. Our little guy is on his TWELFTH (yes, 12!) ear infection. After we had 10 I pushed for the ENT and we were seen about 10 minutes later.
    Our surgery is scheduled for April 23rd, which is annoying since he’s had 3 more infections since we scheduled the surgery. I mean really…how much more suffering should a child go through?
    It’s not even so much a matter of number of infections, it’s the fact that they’re so unresponsive to antibiotics. Each infection was at least 3 courses of different antibiotics.
    Good luck to Jack!

  2. i remember running down the hallway screaming in pain from ear infections. your poor baby. I was fixed when I went under and got tonsils and adenoids out and tubes in. Dont remember too many problems w/ the tubes – in miami there is H20 everywhere, but it was so worth doing. I was in kindergarten at the time. Those slimy gooey drops in a blue bottle were my very best friend. Got an ear infection when I was 18 and just sat outside the clinic till it opened and just kept repeating I need the blue drops… dont really remember the outcome of that, but pain as a semi adult is much worse than pain as toddler/baby. Least when it comes to ear infections. Good luck w/ the little cutie.

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