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  1. #1

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    She's not upset anymore, but I'm a wreck!

    I’m sorry this is so long, but I’m hoping this will help me stop obsessing about what happened. On Wednesday, when I arrived at the YMCA after-school child care, I was met by my nine year old daughter, who was crying and holding her arm. The director told me that she had just walked into the room and seen Razelle kicking another kid because he had "done something to her." My daughter was really upset, so I took her outside where the other kids wouldn’t be staring at us, and asked her what had happened. She described to me, very graphically, what this boy had done. She was holding a frisbee, and he wanted it, so he came up behind her and yanked her arm behind her back and held it, and then when she went to the ground, he got onto her back. She was convinced he was trying to break her arm. I looked at her arm and it wasn’t swollen or bruised, but she said she couldn’t feel it. I was really scared because her dad had gotten injured the same way once, and couldn’t use or feel his arm for months, because he had a brachial plexus injury. That means that the nerves going though his shoulder to his arm had gotten stretched, and they sort of went into shock. I was worried, but of course, I acted calm. I had her wait in the car while I went inside to talk to the director. She had talked to the other kids while I was outside, and had gotten the story out of them. The boy claimed he had just put her arm behind her back and didn’t really do it hard, but she explained to him that it was painful no matter how hard he did it. She apologized and said she would talk to his mother.

    We went home and I gave her some Advil. She said she couldn’t feel her arm or move it. Of course, it had to be her right arm. I was skeptical because she tends to be a drama queen when she’s hurt. She could move her fingers a little, but when she wanted to move her arm, she had to pick it up with her other hand and move it. I could tell it wasn’t broken, and I thought I would see how it was the next morning. Well, it didn’t improve, so we went to the doctor. As the doctor was manipulating her arm while she examined it, she felt a pop. She said she thought a bone in Razelle’s elbow had been dislocated, and had just gone back in. Right away, the arm started to improve. By the time she had been x’rayed (just in case) she was sore, but could move and feel her arm. I was really relieved, but completely drained. I called the child care and told the director what had happened, and she said she would talk to the mother and let her know.

    The next day, Razelle was able to use her arm normally, and went to school in a sling. Around 11 am, the school called me at work to say her arm had gone numb again. We went to Kaiser’s surgical walk-in, which is part of the emergency room. I didn’t know what to think. She claimed her arm was completely numb, but it didn’t seem to faze her, and she was able to use it a little. She was examined by a doctor, and then two neurologists. The neurologists tested her strength and stuck her with a pin all over her hands and arms, and decided she had a brachial plexus injury. Her right arm was usable, but had less strength than her left, and she had no sensation in it. They said what I already knew, that it was early in the injury and could take a long time to heal. Her strength would be back to normal within 4-6 weeks, but the sensation would take longer. There was something about the way they said it that made me think there was a chance the sensation wouldn’t fully return. They referred us for a follow-up appointment in the neurology clinic in 2 months. They wrote a note for the school saying no PE for the rest of the school year, and told me she shouldn’t move her arm in a way that might stretch the nerve again. They also said, and this is what really breaks my heart, that because she had no sensation, she could accidently burn or cut her arm without realizing it, and so we should be really careful.

    I don’t know what will happen to the boy since I haven’t been back there since Friday morning, and I haven’t yet told the director what the neurologists said. I also don’t know what to think about her arm. She’s using her arm again and seems perfectly normal. I believe that she couldn’t use her arm before the elbow was fixed. I believe she had some numbness Friday, but I wonder if maybe she was exaggerating it. I know she feels she doesn’t get to spend enough time with me, and I have been giving her a lot of attention since the injury. When they tested her with the pin, they didn’t have her close her eyes, so she knew where they were sticking her. On the other hand, I know numbness can come and go, and that sometimes what would really bother an adult doesn’t bother a kid as much. I would prefer thinking she’s unconsciously exaggerating her injury to thinking that maybe she’ll never regain normal sensation in it.

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  2. #2

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    Re: She's not upset anymore, but I'm a wreck!

    Wow I am so sorry Hugs to her. I would show the director the note from the doctors and any medical paper work.


  3. #3

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    Re: She's not upset anymore, but I'm a wreck!

    Your poor daughter!! I hope it doesn't take too long to get better!

  4. #4

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    Re: She's not upset anymore, but I'm a wreck!

    Looked up what she has so others will under stand

    The brachial plexus is an arrangement of nerve fibres (a plexus) running from the spine (vertebrae C5-T1), through the neck, the axilla (armpit region), and into the arm. All nerves of the arm stem form the brachial plexus (with the exception of the intercostobrachialis nerve which supplies an area of skin near the axilla). Therefore, lesions of the plexus can lead to severe functional impairment.


  5. #5

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    Re: She's not upset anymore, but I'm a wreck!

    If the injury is that severe I would seek legal advice as well. I would be so angry at the center and the kids parents I would do whatever it takes to make them pay...legally that is.

  6. #6

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    Re: She's not upset anymore, but I'm a wreck!

    Did the other child even apologize?? I'm so sorry, it's so tough to see your kids injured. I worry about mine all the time. Give a big hug to your daughter for us - I hope she's back to 100% soon.

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  7. #7

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    Re: She's not upset anymore, but I'm a wreck!

    Poor kid. I'm dealing with a brachial plexus injury and it isn't very fun. After 10 weeks, I still have numbness in my forearm.

    I'm sure your dr. already informed you that this type of injury is very common and responds well to physical therapy.

    If the neuro was really concerned they would have ordered an MRI immediately, as most of these injuries have resulted from a car accident or traumatic fall, etc.

    My suggestion is to ask your primary care dr. to prescribe PT. It's done wonders for my injury.

    Hugs to you and your sweetie. to the bully.

  8. #8

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    Re: She's not upset anymore, but I'm a wreck!

    Definitley take the medical paperwork into the office and also demand that to see the other childs parents , even though at the time being all may seem well something could crop up at a later date steming from the injury and it should be documented on record at the center and with the other childs parents.

  9. #9

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    Re: She's not upset anymore, but I'm a wreck!

    Sorry about your daughter. I'd ask for the director to set up an appointment with you and the other kid's family and have the director there. That kid's parents need to be made aware of what he's doing to other kids.

  10. #10

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    Re: She's not upset anymore, but I'm a wreck!

    I sorry to hear about this problem with your daughter. I would talk with the director ASAP and maybe a lawyer just to cover your rear. I think that it is unexcusable behavior to happen while she is at daycare. I wonder if this is the first time the boy hurt someone?? I think that something needs to be done before someone get hurt worst than your daughter.
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  11. #11

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    Re: She's not upset anymore, but I'm a wreck!

    I agree with the previous posts about CYA legally but on to your other concern. There's no way to know how your daughter is feeling physically with out her telling you. However, a child will milk an injury for all it's worth, especially when it's new and involves a drama queen. I certainly would have! Try to distract her when they are doing the pin ***** or talk to the doctor away from your daughter and explain your concerns.

    That being said, remember children sometimes have different responses that adults. A shorter attention span may allow her to "forget" her injury when it doesn't hurt or she is captivated by some thing else. She also may not have the vocabulary to describe exactly how it feels. I'm an adult and I've had trouble with that at times (how can something be numb and have stabbing pain at the same time?). Trust your instincts, it sounds like you have a feel for what's happening. I would err on the side of caution but just bear in mind, kids will take any inch you give 'em and run with it!
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  12. #12

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    Re: She's not upset anymore, but I'm a wreck!

    So sorry to hear this happened to your daughter. Injuries to our children are difficult to handle as moms. And to have it happen in someone else's care hurts that much more.

    I hope she is doing better since she has had some time to heal.
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  13. #13

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    Re: She's not upset anymore, but I'm a wreck!

    Hope she is feeling better. we had an incident a few weeks ago while we were at toys r us. Max was walking with dad and decided to drop to the floor thinking that would make dad let go so he could take off to the toys and dad didnt let go and max screamed. he held his arm and didnt want to play with hot wheels so we knew he was hurt. went to the dr and he had "nursemaids elbow" we had to gently manuver his arm a couple time and eventually i felt it pop back(ick) all of a sudden he was fine. dr said that due to his age he might have same thing happen to that arm for the next few years if he does the same thing or even hangs on the monkey bars. scary stuff! i do hope you get to talk to the other kids parents.
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  14. #14

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    Re: She's not upset anymore, but I'm a wreck!

    wow that is so aweful for your daughter.. I would be sooo mad if this happened to one of my girls.. I would.. I think this kid should be somehow helpo accountable........ maybe you should talk to the mom.. I dont know if that would do any good.. but maybe you should.. I would go back to the Y and ask for the BIG BOSS.. and lodge a complaint.. poor kid

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  15. #15

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    Re: She's not upset anymore, but I'm a wreck!

    I really appreciate all your support. Marci, "nursemaid's elbow" is the same thing that happened to Razelle's elbow! The medical term is "radial head dislocation", because the end of one of the two bones in the forearm, the radius, pops out of place. We were told it usually occurs in kids under five, so the doctor was kind of surprised to see it in a 9 year old. Isn't the improvement when the bone goes back in amazing? One minute they can't use it at all, and a few minutes later it's practically normal.

    As for my skepticism about her numbness, I talked to my mom, who was also there when Razelle was examined. She said she thought the neurologists were very careful and thorough, and that Razelle wasn't exaggerating her reactions. My mom can be really harsh, so if she would have no problem saying so if she thought Razelle was exaggerating. I guess I will just take things at face value, and be glad that she seems to be regaining some sensation.

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