Submitted by her mother, Jennifer Lucas
UPDATE: We recently heard from Andi's mother, Jennifer, who told us that Andi's most recent treatment was successful and she has been C. diff free from several weeks.
Andi, my four-year-old has C-diff and we would like to share her story. Before I get started we live in Zanesville, Ohio. Andi was born in Parkersburg, WV, where we lived for three years. ) about a 1 hr 45 min drive from Zanesville and her pediatrician is in Vienna, WV (10 minutes from Parkersburg).
When she started getting sick we took her to a local pediatrician in Zanesville so she could get looked at right away. Our family doctor in Zanesville had said he would see Andi if she got sick, but they had 2 week wait list and they wanted her to have a physical first. We felt she couldn’t wait that long. Andi’s symptoms all started on January 7th with the dry heaves and throwing up. The local pediatrician said it was the stomach flu. On Sunday, January 9th she seemed to get worse with severe stomach cramps and diarrhea. The next day, we took her back to the local pediatrician because her stool was looking real weird and it had blood in it. The doctor took a sample to be tested. It came up negative for cultural.
On Wednesday, January 12th, we took her to the Emergency Room, because she was lying on the couch in a ball just crying because her stomach cramps were so bad. The ER doctor said it was gastritis and put her on a medicine for cramping of the colon. He blamed the vomiting she had on January 7th.
When my husband took her prescription from the ER to the pharmacy, he told the pharmacist the whole story and the pharmacist said "that sounds like C. diff". I looked it up and it was exactly what she was going through. She had a follow up with the local pediatrician on Thursday January 13th. I told the pediatrician what the pharmacist said and he said "Oh no. It can’t be. She was never on antibiotics". I am not medically inclined, so I believed what the doctor said. They ran another stool testing for bacteria, which came up negative as well.
On Monday, January 17th, I called her primary doctor in Vienna, WV and told them everything. They ordered x-rays of her colon/intestines to see if maybe she was constipated. Before the doctor could look at the x-rays they put her on Citrate of Magnesia to help in case that is what it was. The nurse said if she is still in pain by Friday the 21st to bring her down and they would look at her. The doctor ruled out the constipation and ordered 6 different stool tests, including one for C. diff.
We got a call from the on call doctor Sunday January 23rd, to tell us that she tested positive for the C. diff. Monday January 24th, her primary doctor put her on the Flagyl for 10 days. She did awesome those 10 days. Her symptoms disappeared and she was herself. Three days after finished her antibiotics course, the C. diff came back full force. Her primary doctor put her on Flagyl again for 21 days thinking since she responded so well to it the first time a longer course would kill off the bacteria. Again she went back to her normal self. She finished her 21 day stretch February 27th, and she was doing real well. We waited four days to get her re-tested.
On Thursday, March 3rd, we took her stool sample to the hospital at 7:30 pm and didn’t hear anything until Monday. She still was doing fine. On Monday, I called the doctor and they gave us the results that she was still positive. March 8th 2011 her belly starts hurting while going to the bathroom and she runs to the bathroom. Her stool is a little softer and now to this day her belly is just hurting. She will say "Oh, my belly hurts now".
In late March, Andi’s parents took her to Nationwide Children’s Hospital in Columbus, Ohio to get a second opinion. The doctors there put her on a third round of Flagyl - this time for 30 days. Andi will be 5 in May and she has been struggling with recurrent C. diff for 4 months.
We wish Andi a speedy recovery and will update this page as we hear more from her family.