I realize that yesterday I mentioned that we were at Asthma DEFCON 2. Well, today, I feel that it might be helpful for me to codify exactly what our Asthma DEFCON levels are, because, well, last night we shifted into Asthma DEFCON 1. I have stolen a page from the United States Military Nuclear Forces for my terminology here. In this case DEFCON stands for DEFense CONdition and refers to Wifey and my levels of readiness for Little Man’s asthma.

Here we go.

Asthma DEFCON 5: Little Man is doing just peachy. He is up to date on his maintenance meds, it is not too hot and not too cold outside without an insane amount of humidity. He has not been exposed to any allergens that he reacts to poorly in the recent past. Wifey and I are not concerned about a severe asthma attack occurring. This is a RARE state for the SRH household to be in.

Asthma DEFCON 4: Little Man might have coughed once. It is between October and May in the calendar year. Wifey and I have increased our vigilance in surveilling Little Man’s chest for signs of reatraction and other symptoms of labored breathing. Honestly, this is where Wifey and I reside most of the time.

Asthma DEFCON 3: He is most likely starting to get sick with some kind of virus or other such thing that kids typically get. Little Man’s breathing is “creaky” enough that we have started giving him supplemental breathing treatments twice a day with his rescue breathing treatments. Basically we have added to the Pulmicort and Foridyl aerosol cocktail both Xopenex and Atravent. This changes the aerosol treamnet from a benign 5 minutes of Little Man sitting still to a 30 minute battle of keeping the breathing mask on his face. Wifey and I are more aggressive about Little Man’s coughing. If there are more than one coughing fit in the span of 1 hour, we immediately move into Asthma DEFCON 2.

Asthma DEFCON 2: We are administering rescue breathing treatments every 4 hours. Little Man is clearly not feeling well. The virus of indeterminate origin is kicking Little Man’s ass, and Little Man’s breathing is suspect at best. Wifey and I are starting to lose sleep and contemplating when we should make the trip to the ER.

Asthma DEFCON 1: Little Man’s breathing is rather compromised. We are doing breathing treatments more than every 4 hours. We have increased the dosage of his aerosol steroid, and we are getting things ready for an eventual most probable trip to the ER. Wifey and I are both really sleep deprived and starting to labor with the idea of finishing sentences and completing thoughts.

Asthma EMERGICON: We are heading to the ER/DR’s Office because the breathing treatments are not giving him any sort of respitory relief. We have our portable DVD player and his allergen free snacks in tow. We are about to go on Orapred. Wifey and I are demoralized and exhausted. Demoralized due to the battle to keep Little Man off of Orapred, and exhausted because, well, we haven’t slept well in a while. Haven’t you been reading these?!?

After Asthma EMERGICON we are in the hospital for Little Man’s breathing. He has been hospitalized and we are even more sleep deprived and fighting with hospital staff about what Little Man can and cannot eat.

We are currently still at Asthma DEFCON 1 but it seems to be better than it was last night. I think we might be able to downgrade to Asthma DEFCON 2, but I don’t want to jinx it by hoping too fervently that we can do that. We have his ER bundle pretty much ready to go though.

To Recap:
I will probably refer to these Asthma DEFCONs often on the blog
Memorize them, there will be a test later
I am sleep deprived and shot full of caffeine
That’s right, in these cases of extreme fatigue I turn to my major vice… Mt. Dew
Hopped up on caffeine and sleep deprived makes me a bit snarky
Not sure what is for dinner
I will update the Asthma DEFCON level after Little Man gets up from his nap.