Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Forcible Retraction on an Intact Male Infant/Child: Don't Let It Happen To Your Son!

my poor sick bug

My youngest child(7 months old), "L" has had a fever the last 3 days. I became very worried when it spiked this morning to 105.5 degrees fahrenheit. After a dose of Tylenol, I took him in to the Emergency Room, like many concerned parents would do. They took his temperature, which had dropped to 103. Still, the previous temperature had us very worried. We waited for them to get everything together to get urine and blood. I was told that using a catheter to catch his urine would be best because "the extra skin cells(his foreskin) would affect the test results and contaminate the culture".

I gave consent, and they go ahead with the procedure. I was horrified as the nurse pulled his skin back to reveal his little "head". She wasn't gentle with inserting the catheter, either. The nurse kept jamming it, trying to get it into his bladder, but the catheter was too big. L started crying even before the catheter because his foreskin started bleeding. And he was screaming bloody murder he was in so much pain. I felt sick to my stomach and started crying. My 5.5 year old son was with me and was alarmed at how much pain his little brother was in. He started crying as well. I then started shaking in anger, because the nurse persisted with her jabbing the catheter with force that shouldn't be used on ANYONE that is having something foreign put into their body and not paying attention to him bleeding.

I fought such an internal battle of telling her to stop, but feared being ridiculed. I finally told her I wanted them to use a bag to catch his urine instead. "Oh no, I'll have someone else try to do it. I just can't get it past his urethra," she said dismissing my comment.

As she left, the attending doctor came back to see my son and her jaw fell open as she surveilled the scene in the room. My puffy, teary eyes, my screaming infant son with a catheter hanging out of him and my older son, crying in a chair off to the side. She removed the catheter and had me put my son to the breast to calm him. The doctor gingerly put a urine bag over his penis and put a diaper on him, apologized and informed me of the blood test results, which showed he was fighting an infection, possibly a urinary tract infection and that he would need antibiotics.

His urine tested positive for infection as well. He received a 24 hour antibiotic shot and we were released with a script for his medicine. I feel horrible for not knowing to advocate my son's needs. I feel guilty for not telling them to not use a catheter on him. I feel like a bad mom for allowing that stupid nurse to forcibly retract his foreskin. I am writing a letter of complaint to the hospital and asking them to educate their staff on how to care for intact boys. Never ever forcibly retract a boy's foreskin. Here are some links I am providing in my letter to the hospital, so more people can be educated and advocate for their children. Information is power, and our voice is important, because our children don't have one yet.


If there are more links you would like me to include or write about, please email them to me at allthingsmommy2@yahoo.com or post on my Facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/allthingsmommy