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Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Fun with Periactin

Before Raya broke her arm on Thanksgiving, we had started her on a medication called periactin (cyproheptadine). It's an antihistamine but it's also used in children with feeding disturbances to help simulate appetite. When it was first prescribed to her, I was told that it would cause drowsiness. (Is it terrible of me to admit that I was totally ok with that?) I didn't think much or expect to see any real side effects though, and we didn't notice any on the first course of it. It did seem to give her a little more desire or capacity to eat a little more at a time though.
Then she broke her arm. She wanted to eat her precious "ta-TEEM" (aka plain greek yogurt/sour cream) but she lacked the ability to hold the spoon or feed herself, let alone do it without getting smelly sour cream/yogurt on her cast. Since she wouldn't let me help her, I decided to stop giving her periactin until after the cast was off. The whole 4 weeks she had it, she didn't eat much of anything. She would eat one or two tablespoons of greek yogurt and maybe a couple of crackers but that wa it.
The cast came off Monday and I gave her the first dose of it that night. On Monday she ate 5 tablespoons of the yogurt and 1/4 cup of dry cereal. On Tuesday, she ate a little more of the dry cereal and a whopping 8 tablespoons of greek yogurt, i.e. 1/2 cup!! I was rather excited about that. She didn't take a nap yesterday but lately that's not totally abnormal. But... Did I mention that the other possible side effects of periactin are insomnia and restlessness?
She went to bed at her normal bedtime and was asleep by about 6:30. Then she woke up around 10:30 and was up until at least 1am when I finally fell asleep. When Donny left for work at 5:30, she was laying in her bed talking so who knows how long she actually slept. It was definitely less than her typical 11 or 12 hours.
This morning she ate 1/4 cup dry cereal for breakfast and then was so crabby and tired that I put her in bed for her nap at 10:00 instead of 10:30. At 11:00, she was still singing and talking so I changed her diaper and tucked her in again. A few minutes later I had to go in the room to get something and she had taken the pump out of the backpack and twisted it around the bars of the crib. Oh and she ripped the voice box and some wires out of the talking baby doll that was in her bed. I tucked her in again but she still didn't go to sleep. Finally at 1:00 she started yelling "MOMMY!" and when I went to get her, this is what I saw as I walked through the door:

She was stuck. She was hooked to the pump, she had the cord tangled all around her, and she had a huge pile of blankets blocking her from being able to drag the IV pole out of the room. It was kind of funny side from the fact that she needed a nap. :)
The good news is that she ate an entire NutriGrain bar this evening, which is 120 calories in one sitting. She's done that a couple of times before but then had lost interest in them so I'm excited that she ate it. I hope that the periactin will be a positive thing for her and keep her interested in food.
Every time I turned around today she was climbing on something, getting into something, or dumping something out. This evening she was running around like a wild woman again and disappeared into our room. When she came out, she had my makeup brush in one hand and Donny's bo in the other:

So silly and such a pill!

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