Tuesday, March 09, 2010


On Sunday afternoon Ethan felt warm when he woke up from his nap. I couldn't find the thermometer so I just went ahead and gave him a dose of Motrin. Two hours later, he felt very warm so I found the thermometer and discovered that he had 103 degree fever! Since I had just given him medicine two hours before, I called and left a message on the after-hours doctor line. A doctor who was covering for my pediatrician called back. He asked how much Motrin I had given Ethan. I told him that I gave him the highest dose listed on the bottle which was .6. He said that didn't seem like a very high dose so he asked me to find the bottle and tell him what strength it was. When I pulled out the bottle, I discovered that it was not Motrin that I had given Ethan but Mylicon (the gas drops). I always keep fever medicine in the diaper bag so I guess when I pulled it out, I saw the "M" and it registered in my mind as Motrin. Oh boy.

This created a moral dilemma: should I lie and said that I couldn't find the bottle or admit that I had given my child the wrong medication? This really did enter my mind. You will be proud though, I did admit my mistake. I told him I was very embarrassed to have to admit that it wasn't Motrin that I had given him but Mylicon. Either he had a dry doctor's sense of humor or he was treating me like an idiot mother by responding, "that won't do anything to reduce fever." Yes, thanks, I know that but at least he won't have gas! He went on to explain in great detail how to give Ethan Tylenol. I guess he figured he needed to explain everything, including the fact that it should be liquid, to a mother who gave her child gas drops to get rid of fever. Within a half hour his fever was down. Amazing what actually giving fever reducing medication can do!

I will definitely look twice at the medication labels from now on. I am very thankful that it wasn't a more serious error!


Priscilla said...

Don't worry! I think all mommies have moments like this. Plus, I also think that doctors can tend to treat others like we don't have a clue. It drives me nuts, as Kurt and I were just discussing this last night. I feel like I have to tell everyone my age and degree of schooling or they treat me like a poor sixteen-year-old without a clue! Glad Ethan's fever came down:-)

Lisa (the girls' moma) said...

That's pretty funny. And THAT, my dear, is why we keep blogs. We can all relate!!!