Rebecca Horne
Doctors, misdiagnosis, Is your child at risk?
     Concerned about your child's well-being? Silly question really, of course you are! I truly want parents to be aware of incidents like I mention below because your child's well-being is unmistakeably and ultimately in your hands.
     Keep in mind, I don't assume all doctor's are like this. I know there are ones out there that truly do care and I do understand that they have many patients they need to attend to. 

     For the past couple of days my son has been sick. I had originally decided to wait until the weekend had passed before I took him to the doctors. Perhaps he may have gotten better. Throughout the weekend I noticed him get progressively worse. On Sunday I decided to take him to the doctors. With my son being only 7 months old, I preferred to go to a doctor that specialized in children. It was the Children's After Hours Clinic on Fanshawe Park Road.  Once in, I explained to the doctor the symptoms my son had. The doctor seemingly brushed my concerns off, it was as if he had already decided what was wrong with my child. As he examined my son, I continued to express my concerns. He began to draw a diagram. It was a profile view drawing of a human's sinuses. He then indicated to where my son's adenoids were and declared that this was the issue. Apparently it is the time of year for this and since children of his age have a flat nose, this causes congestion too. I fought back, concerned as to the rasping, coughing and wheezing of my son's chest. His response, " Yep. All connected to the adenoids." So I progressed, "And the bunged up, runny nose, throwing up from coughing so hard??.. "Yep, yep. All connected to the same thing." Now, this is what blew me away. He then proceeded to show me several diagrams he had drawn of the exact same picture he had drawn for me. He exclaimed that many of the children that had come in that day had had the same symptoms. There were over twenty drawings he showed me, pulling them out of the garbage. I thought to myself, this seems extremely odd to have this many children all with nothing more than an adenoid issue. The doctor also stated that due to the change in humidity and with the furnace being on,it causes the congestion. First of all, I don't have a furnace! It's a boiler system which is a completely different heat & secondly, you're telling me that although my husband is at home sick with exactly the same symptoms and although my child has been perfectly healthy all winter up until this very weekend, that it is simply his adenoids and there is absolutely nothing I can do about it? I asked if getting a humidifier would help and he said no. Hang on a minute, I thought you just said it was the change in humidity? Surely a humidifer would help? Needless to say, I was not at all happy with this doctor's diagnosis & I thought it absolutely ludacris. I left feeling completely unsatisfied.

Needless to say I went for a second opinion. This time to a simple walk in clinic. I never mentioned that I had been to another clinic. As the doctor performed the examinations, he became concerned and stated that he thought my child may possibly have pneumonia! We were sent to have a chest xray and let me tell you, THAT is an awful thing to see an infant go through. We were also prescribed a steroid to help the inflammation go down and a puffer to help with the wheezing of his lungs! The results have come back from the xray and he DOES have pneumonia! I am so unbelievabley grateful and happy that I went to another doctor. He is now on antibiotics to help get rid of this awful sickness. If I hadn't gone for a second opinion, I don't even want to imagine what could have happened to my son.

 My other main concern is for all those children who went to the Children's After Hours Clinic that day and were told the same thing as I originally was. Some parents may take this doctor's word as gospel. I would advise them and think it best to get a second opinion as soon as possible. I understand that in some cases this may very well be the actual diagnosis of their child but for all those other parents out there having doubts, please be advised. We, as adults can take medications to help ease the pain of some of our symptoms. Infants usually can't and they have to suffer through it. Now to me, this doctor just seemed like he had walked into work that morning and thought, "Yep, this is the diagnosis all the children are going to have today." As a mom, I just knew something wasn't right.

 I had to take my child to the emergency center at the hospital on Halloween night. He hadn't opened his eyes for about 4 hours. At first, I thought he was sleepy. He did infact sleep for a bit but when it was time to wake up, he wasn't opening his eyes. I knew something wasn't right. He must have something in his eye. I tried to flush it out with water but no luck. We made the decision to go to Emerg. We didn't wait very long and we were finally seen by a couple of doctors. One being a student. My son had slowly started opeing his eyes by this time but you could tell the one eye was extremely sore and red. The doctors examined him. I had suggested flushing out the eye which I assumed they would have automatically done in the first place but no, nothing to that effect was done. After poking and prodding, lights on and off, opening and closing, they had come to their conclusion. It was pink eye they exclaimed together. They proceeded to inform us about the symptoms experienced with pink eye inlcuding sneezing. Coincidently, "Achoo!", my son sneezes, they look at each other adoringly and say,"Yep, pink eye!" It was as if it was a scene out of a movie. My husband & I just looked at each other and knew what the other was thinking. As a parent, a good chunk of the time you know when something is wrong with your child. It's an instinct that's built into you. We left the hospital unsure about the diagnosis. It just didn't seem right. If it was pink eye, wouldn't it have slowly on set? Gradually become apparent? Our son basically woke up one hour unable to open his eyes. Well, I'll have you know that in less than an hour after we were home, his eye cleared right up. A little red from whatever had been trapped in there irritating it but none the less, perfectly fine. No pink eye. Nothing.

These experiences are really starting to make me wonder. Are the doctors starting to feel so much underpressure that they are rushing through things and misdiagnosing? In and out that's all they want? I understand that this is not the case in all situations but it's really starting to make me wonder. Am I going to continually have to get second opinions? I would like to make a section of this page decicated to any parents that would like to alert or warn, inform other parents about issues such as what I have experienced. For the benefits of our children. I'd hate to think that some parent have their child hospitalized due to a misdiagnosis.

Another Incident