Friday, 17 July 2015

A Side of Autism: Needles

I don't mind needles but I can't say the same for V-Man.
He has never enjoyed a single blood test or vaccine and I don't blame him.
His first big blood test around the time he was being diagnosed and tested for autism (when he was 2) was something straight out of a horror movie.
First of all, he was fighting and screaming without any needles near him. It was just the strap on his arm to help make his vein pop out a bit more.
Then it took three nurses plus me to hold him down and a fourth to get the blood.
He was 2.
It was a really crappy situation because the nurse wasn't quite experienced with super strong autistic children and the blood went everywhere (this is the horror story bit) - I mean spraying down his arm, into his lap, out and forward.
In the meantime, V-Man was thrashing about and tried biting me, clawing at my face and giving a nurse a few good kicks too.  We both left sobbing and I threatened SH that he better be doing these blood tests from now on.
He was 2.

Today I finally decided to suck it up and bring him in for some blood tests to see if he has lactose-intolerance or Celiac.
His regular doctor (she's a real twit-honestly!) doesn't seem to understand our frustration of having to change 8-12 crappy diapers a day. So every time V-Man had a doctor appointment with her, for the past 2 years- she continued to not take us seriously and kept recommending laxatives.  Which we tried but it didn't seem to make a difference.
Finally and recently, V-Man had his yearly assessment at the disability clinic and the doctor there suggested he gets these blood tests done.
Seeing as V-Man magically stopped drinking milk (dairy, soy, rice and oats-pretty much anything white) and doesn't like dairy products-she's leaning towards lactose intolerance.  And also a blood sample for Celiac too just in case.

So today I brought him downtown with his half a bagel and a fully charged cell phone and we went to the blood clinic downtown to only find out that it had moved.
After going up and down the wrong street - we finally found it and we didn't have to wait long.
We walked in and I immediately handed over his Kela card and advised the nurse that V-Man is autistic in Finnish and that we need another person to help me hold him down (in English).
She immediately went off and got someone - which was awesome she believed me (we've had situations before where it got messy - like the first test) - and we went to it.
I had V-Man in my lap and while I appreciate him flattening my thighs a little - after awhile we decided that it wasn't working.  I had Teletubbies on Youtube playing on my phone and to the side and out of his reach and still it wasn't distracting enough.
He was twisting and moving his shoulders and we had him sit in the chair himself and I held him back and into the seat from behind.  Then the other nurse held down his hands and arms.  The second nurse got into his vein and the blood flow wasn't as fast and he needed 3(!) vials of blood for these tests.
He started to wiggle (along with screaming and crying) and the needle was close to breaking - because it was bending at such a disgusting angle.
So they removed that, wiped up the blood and taped up his arm.
Onto arm 2!  We finally managed to get it all sorted and even though the first vial wasn't very full - I'm assuming it was just enough.

After what felt like the longest 15 minutes ever - he was done and we left.
After every appointment with him, we go for lunch and try to put the horror of a bad appointment behind us.
I just honestly don't know what we'll do when he's older!  He'll just get bigger and stronger - I'm predicting he'll be bigger and stronger than me and SH...
I guess I just need to be happy that his lactose test only involved 1 vial of blood - where mine involved several samples over a span of a few hours!

Oh well - at least it's done and over with!
Perhaps next time I should bring some wine and cheese for the nurses...I know I could've used a drink after!

1 comment:

  1. Oh you poor guys! Wine and cheese, absolutely cures everything for adoults. I am blessed with my own smallis autistic fellow, yeah he's not into needles either, but it is noting as bad as that. I do often worry about *when* he gets more powerful than me. Ever since I saw this: (WARNING, very scary) Sorry that it's only in Finnish. Sure, I do martial arts and I can take a lot, but the fact is he will be more powerful than me some day. Also if he decides to get violent towards other women and men that take care of him... That's also something to look forwards to.