SCD and the Stomach Flu

Remember, I am not a medical professional and I am not offering medical advice for you or your children; I’m just sharing with you the challenges of being an SCD mom ;)

For those of you who have kids on the SCD, especially those who can be severely behaviorally challenged, you know how an illness can put your whole family into a tailspin. This past weekend was one of those times for us. Actually, it continues to be.

My younger daughter, who although never diagnosed with ASD, has since birth exhibited some of the same sensory, behavioral, and digestive challenges.

Last Friday was her first-ever bout with the stomach flu, and we’re all still suffering. To some of you this may sound harsh, but if you have kids like this, you know exactly what I mean.

So, I’ll spare you an MP3 file of the countless hours of screaming and belligerence and simply tell you about how we dealt with the virus and still kept her on the SCD.

I should tell you that there was about 24 hours when we thought we may have to take her to the hospital for I.V. fluids. During that time I was in phone contact with the doctor’s office four times and was constantly monitoring her for dehydration.

Here’s the short story:

The violent vomiting started about 9 a.m. Friday—at which point she developed petechiae, a word I hadn’t stayed in medical school long enough to learn—and continued until almost 4 a.m. Saturday. Up until that point, she couldn’t keep down even a teaspoon of any fluid. The remainder of the night we gave her approximately 1-2 teaspoon sips of SCD electrolyte solution every few minutes. Scroll down to see the recipe.

On Saturday we continued to increase fluids slowly—again paying attention to her level of hydration. Check out this page by Dr. Sears for info about dehydration. We also slowly introduced soft foods like SCD gelatin made with legal grape juice, and homemade chicken broth, which she really wouldn’t eat.

We paid careful attention to how frequently she was urinating. By the way, if you’re not keeping a medial log for your child who’s following the SCD, I highly recommend it. At some point in the future, I hope to post one on this site for you to download. They’re invaluable when talking to the docs and for trying to determine what foods are causing what symptoms, etc.

And after discussion with the pediatrician’s office and pharmacy, we gave her one generic acetaminophen suppository (like FeverAll) for an increasing fever. Typically, I prefer to let one’s body utilize the fever to fight infection, but that’s a story for another blog. The take-home message is, “Moms, trust your instincts.”

She didn’t eat her first solid food until Sunday evening and then very little. As of Monday, she’s eating solids, but not as much as usual and is definitely not herself. Well, actually, she’s more like her pre-SCD self. And between you and me, I’m ready for my happy girl to come back!

This recipe is from the official Breaking the Vicious Cycle site.

Electrolyte Solution Recipe:

¼ tsp. baking soda
¼ tsp. salt
2 Tbs. honey
1 quart boiling water

I refrigerated it, and then to each individual serving I added fresh lemon juice and called it “lemonade” to get my daughter to try it. I also froze some as popsicles. (Thanks to a friend who recommended that when my mommy brain wasn’t functioning clearly.)

Please note that you have to remake the solution every 24 hours to maintain its effectiveness!


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About LivingLaVidaMama

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Formerly, I've worked in publishing and been a medical student. Currently, I'm a freelance writer and copy editor, and full-time mom with two exceptional daughters. LivingLaVidaMama focuses on intentional frugality and the Specific Carbohydrate Diet that has dramatically improved my younger daughter's autistic-like symptoms. Contact me at MadForWriting at