On the way home Alex started dry-heaving and again saying, "ouch head". We got home and we couldn't get him to drink anything. He was laying on our living room floor and his lips were gray. He was becoming unresponsive. We had not been home more than 5 minutes when I called our Pediatrician's office back and told them what was going on. They called our local Children's Hospital and got a bed for him. I drove him to the hospital in a sheer panic. My little boy was not responding and looked almost comatose in his little car seat.
He "slept" through them inserting an IV. I sat and held and held him, just thinking all he needed was fluids and then we could go home. However, I sensed concern from the staff at the hospital. When he wasn't perking up after a few hours our Pediatrician came up to the hospital and ordered a spinal tap. I asked a nurse who had been in there how it went and she simply said, "the spinal fluid was cloudy". And I asked what that meant. She said, "it's abnormal". Assuming at that point it was likely viral meningitis my husband went home while I waited with Alex. Soon after he left nurses and other staff started coming in to our room wearing face masks. I asked what was going on and someone said, "didn't anyone tell you? your son has bacterial meningitis". I was floored.
At this point he had had an antibiotic in him (the Rocephin) for nearly 12 hours. They said he would need to be watched closely all night and started giving him several different antibiotics through the IV. Soon after they were in there we got a phone call from our Pediatrician letting us know what was going on. Since he had given the Rocephin earlier in the day they were not able to culture the spinal fluid, but it did have certain markers that indicated bacterial meningitis. Luckily, since our pediatrician had taken blood prior to giving the Rocephin they were able to culture that and determined that it was Pneumococcal. Even though our son had been vaccinated with PCV7 (all 4 doses), this was one of the strains not included in that vaccine.
Our sweet boy spent 11 days in the hospital, but did heal completely. He is now 7 and is experiencing some vision issues (flashing lights) that we are going to a neurologist to have checked out. Not sure if that could be related.
I thank God every day for him. Trust your instincts if you feel something is not right with your child.