When Medical Labs Screw Up!!!

A medical lab's mistake turned our lives into chaos for the past couple of weeks. As stated in my previous entry my son has Crohn's Disease and it was bad enough that he had to have surgery to remove an abscess at the beginning of May 2013. And we were happy after that since he was on the road to recovery but alas a disturbing call on June 13 brought our world to a standstill. I get a call from his gastroenterologist asking me to bring him to the hospital right away because a culture they took from  his abscess had come back positive for TB (tuberculosis). I was a total wreck knowing that my son was taking Humira and now probably had TB. Needless to say as a teenage boy having to deal with a hospital stay the previous month he was not very happy to find himself being dragged back to the hospital and I can't blame him for that. When we get to the hospital I called the doctor and he met us right away, asked Noah to put on a mask and explained to us the severity of the situation. Within 10 minutes of arriving at the hospital my son has been admitted and was in a room. That same day he has an MRI to determine the damage of the TB and the next morning he has a CT Scan followed by a spinal tap. The day after that they bring him down to Nuclear Science department to have a bone scan and various other tests. ALL these tests come back negative for TB. Every day we meet with various specialists and they are perplexed at the fact that his culture came back positive for TB but all the tests they have run come back Negative. We also had to have my son Adam tested along with ourselves. Our tests came back negative.
Noah's gastroenterologists wanted to leave no stone unturned and it's decided that maybe the TB is in his intestines or colon. They do an endoscopy and colonoscopy along with biopsy to determine if TB is present. At this point an infectious disease specialist, Dr. Reed, that we had consulted comes back and states that he doesn't believe that our son has TB becauses all the tests show he doesn't have the disease but he believes that somehow his specimen got contaminated at the lab by some other persons specimen that had the disease.
Unfortunately at this point the Florida Health Department is involved and unfortunately for my son he is forced to take the TB medication until Dr. Reed can prove that my son's specimen got contaminated at the lab and he doesn't have the disease. He is unable to continue his medication for the disease he does have which is Crohn's and is forced to take the TB meds.
Dr. Reed and his gastroenterologists release my son from the hospital 6 days after he is admitted however we still have to deal with the Florida Health Department who insist my son takes the TB medication until it is proven that his specimen was indeed contaminated. So no matter what other tests this poor child has gone through that prove he does not have the disease he is unable to start back on the medication he should be on for his Crohn's because the state believes he has TB. The Florida Health Department actually has a nurse that comes to the house every day that has to witness him taking his meds (meds he doesn't need!!!). 

We spend Father's day in the hospital with my son... what should have been a happy day is instead a day filled with worries and stress. And for months we had been planning for our 25th wedding anniversary which was a family reunion in Montreal, Canada. But the most pressing matter was getting our son back on his regular medication and off the TB meds. Finally on June 28th we got the call from Dr. Reed stating that he was able to prove to the Health Department that Noah's specimen was indeed contaminated and he could get off the TB meds and back on his regular meds.
It was a wonderful day and we are currently working on getting him back to good health.
Although our big family reunion in Montreal was cancelled at least our daughters managed to get away for a few days to come and celebrate our 25th wedding anniversary on the 25th of June.
Here are some photos from our special day.
Adam and Noah

The Hubby and me.

Having fun in the pool
Noah having fun playing
Celebrating our 25th at Saia in Fort Lauderdale, FL

©2013 PaulaSantos

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