Monday, April 6, 2009

Evan's Story

I have had several people ask me to write something up so they can pass the information along. Here is what I have already posted on many websites. Feel free to copy and paste it or give the link. There is also a picture of Evan to use. The more people who know about this, the better! Thanks...

Evan's Story (Cough Medicine & Sudden Death)

"I just wanted to share our story about our 6-year old son, Evan. On May 31, 2008 our precious little boy passed away. I went into his room to wake him, and he was already with the angels. There was nothing anyone could do. Our lives were shattered!

The evening before he passed, Evan had a low grade fever (99.4) and a "croup-like cough". Nothing to really be concerned about. I gave him cough medicine and Motrin. After all, children get these little bugs all the time.

The autopsy report showed he had a viral infection in his lungs, but they were unsure as to the specific cause of death. Evan has been classified as SUDC (Sudden Unexplained Death in Childhood). My husband and I decided to have further genetic testing done on Evan. There has to be a reason why my 6-year old just died in his bed.

In the first week of January, we got a call from Indiana University, which conducted some of the testing. The doctor stated to us that one of Evan's liver enzymes, "2D6", was found to be inactive or essentially dead, non-functioning. When the enzymes in the liver do not work properly, the liver is not capable of breaking down certain medications. Therefore, the cough medicine containing "dextromethorphan" contributed to his death. This chemical is a cough suppressant. Read the back of the labels and you will find this in most all cough medicines. The doctors told us that 7-10% of all children have these missing or inactive enzymes. In medical terms, this is referred to as Cytochrome P450/2D6.

How could something that suppose to help your child take his life??? There is much debate over the use of cough and cold medicine for children. What they don't tell you is the risk of sudden death, Evan now being one of them. My mission now is to save the lives of children everywhere. If someone had informed me of this, I would have NEVER given this medicine to Evan. Now, I get to spend the rest of my life without my precious little boy...


Amanda G said...

Daven, thank you again for sharing your story with so many mothers who will be educated about the dangers of cough medicine.
Nate & your strength is amazing, but your faith is what I find absolutely soul-touching. May God continue to comfort you in your storm. Love you!!

Erica said...

Thank you for sharing and helping to educate others about the dangers of this!

simpson1172 said...

Daven, I wanted to thank you so much for your bravery and honesty in sharing your story and feelings. You will never know how many little lives you have saved by sharing your life with us. Amanda Gillihan sent me your link yesterday after we were discussing my 4 yr old having croup and the fact I gave him cough medicine. The cough med is in the trash and I have forwarded your blog to everyone I know. Thank you and God Bless you and your family.

"While we try and teach our children all about life, our children teach us what life is all about."