The Benefit of Telemedicine in the Case of the Mysterious Bruise

By: Naomi Zilkha, MD (Telemedicine, Allied Physicians Group)

Hi Allied! It’s #TelemedicineTuesday!

This week, I’ve actually had a lot of different reasons for Telemedicine visits ranging from ADHD follow up (had 2 tonight) to diaper rash, tick bite, mosquito bite, breastfeeding question, mouth/tooth injury from falling, pink eye, summer cold, and summer allergies.

But today I’m going to talk about just one patient because it was a really perfect use of a Telemedicine, and of my pediatric detective skills.

This was a toddler who had a visit for a weird bruise on his spine. When I saw the injury, the first thing that jumped into my head was possible abuse, and the second thing that popped into my head was something potentially bad going on in the patient’s blood causing strange bruises.

All toddlers get bruises, but most of them are in very characteristic places (below the knee is the most common).

And the parents seemed to have been at their wits’ end trying to figure out where this strange bruise came from.

Long story short, I finally found out the story: Dad had been mowing the lawn and decided that it might be fun for his 3 kids to ride in wagons while he mowed the lawn.

So, he got out 3 little wagons, one of which was your typical red wagon, the others were wood. And he tied the wagons together with rope, and then tied the rope around his waist.

And he was right, the kids all had a great time bumping around in the wagons while he pulled them and mowed the lawn. For an hour.

It occurred to me that bumping repeatedly on the back of a red wagon could give those bruises, so I had the dad take the child out to the wagon (this is what’s so cool about Telemedicine—I could watch this whole thing evolve in real time), and put him in, and pull it and see if the bruises lined up to the side of the wagon.

And they did! And the parents and I breathed a collective sigh of relief! I gave them instructions, which of course included no more wagon rides while mowing the lawn!! 🌳😮👍

So remember, for after-hours urgent care, #ThinkAlliedTelemedicine first!!

-Dr. Z


Download it before you need it! To learn more about the Allied Telehealth program and how to download TytoCare, click here.