Thursday, July 7, 2011

To Take Him or Not to Take Him

Today, Baxter hit his head.  Hard.  He's hit his head many times before, because he's an active little boy, but this was the hardest yet.  I immediately started to wonder what I should do.  He cried, but then he wanted to play.  I frantically googled "how to know if an infant has a concussion."  He wasn't dizzy, vomiting, confused, irritable, there was no ear/nose/mouth drainage, and he did not lose consciousness.  He was drowsy, but that could be attributed to the fact that it was nap time.  I checked his pupils to see if they dilated and they did. 

Everything pointed towards not having a concussion, but I couldn't get a hold of Eric, so I didn't know what he thought.  I decided to call the doctor, and get his opinion.  Surely if he didn't think Baxter had a concussion then I should stop worrying.  I called, I spoke with a nurse, and I got a call back.  "Go to the ER" I was told and "get him a CAT Scan."  What?!

After that statement I had to make, what I think, is one of the hardest decisions as a parent.  When your child is not obviously injured (broken bone, bleeding profusely, etc), but there is the possibility that he is, what do you do?  And I honestly believe that the answer has something to do with the type of insurance coverage you have.  Eric owns his own company, so this means we are completely responsible for our health insurance.  And if you aren't responsible for your own, let me tell you, it's expensive (and let me also tell you that I may be slightly or more than slightly jealous).

The contemplation of that decision actually made me cry.  How can I question whether or not to have my child examined for a head injury?  But how can I have this CAT scan done (for lots and lots of our own money) and then find nothing wrong, knowing that it probably wasn't a concussion in the first place (based on the lack of symptoms)?  Ugh, I hate all this bull with health insurance and the cost of medical care.

I'm not going to start a rant, I promise.  I know doctors are very smart, and deserve to get paid for their expertise, but it's still so maddening that I have to question my child's health because of the high costs.  If you're a parent, have you ever been in this situation?  What did you do?

I am trying not to be over-cautious.  He's a little boy after all, and this isn't the last time he'd going to hit his head, but I also don't want to be under-cautious either.  Goodness, being a parent is tough stuff. 


  1. I went through something similar just this past weekend. James' two cousins fell on top of him and smashed his ankle pretty hard. He cried a ton and the next day was limping quite badly. There was no bruising, no swelling, no bones protruding, no visible damage, etc. My mother, being the concerned grandma she is, wanted me to take him to be looked at. I on the other hand, had to weigh the cost vs. the reality of actual damage to my son's ankle. We decided not to take him and just did our best to nurse his sore ankle for a few days. He's perfectly fine now. I think there is a certain level of confidence we can have in our Lord when it comes to our childrens' well-being. I'm convinced if something is truly wrong, the Holy Spirit will prompt us. We serve the Almighty God, the Creator and Sustainer of all things and He is our Ultimate Physician. We should use proper discernment when it comes to making decision in the care of our kids and leave the rest up to the Lord. =) Just my two cents.

  2. @Stephanie
    I love two cents :) And I'm glad that James wasn't hurt too bad!