Being a medical advocate for your child

Learn about: Being a medical advocate for your child from Shelley Hurguy, RN, MSN, CRNA, CHHC,...
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Being a medical advocate for your child

I realized that I would have to become my daughter's medical advocate when she was less than two days old. Right after her birth, everything seemed perfect. She nursed beautifully, and she continued to do so for about 24 hours. And then she just stopped. She refused to nurse. We had the lactation consultant come to visit us. She gave us some tips and advice, but nothing worked; she just wouldn't nurse from that point forward. I talked with every nurse that came into my room and every pediatrician that came in my room, but no one seemed worried. I was a first-time mom; I was no expert in nursing or newborns, but I knew that something wasn't right. And after about ten hours with no milk and no wet diapers, she started vomiting bile, and I knew that wasn't normal. They whisked her away to x-ray, they put tubes in her and they put her in the ICU, and they came back and they told me that she had been diagnosed with a congenital bowel defect and that she would have to be transferred to another hospital for emergency surgery. My obstetrician told me that I would not be able to go with her because this hospital didn't have beds for postpartum moms, and I would need to recover from my C-section at my hospital. And so I was sitting in my hospital room alone and I decided that I would be leaving. And I signed out against medical advice and my brother-on-law drove me to the hospital she was at. It was during that ride that I realized that my role as her mother was going to be more than just keeping her clothed, fed, and dry. I was going to have to be her medical advocate. I had to learn everything I could about her condition and her treatments so that I can be in control of her care.

Learn about: Being a medical advocate for your child from Shelley Hurguy, RN, MSN, CRNA, CHHC,...


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Shelley Hurguy, RN, MSN, CRNA, CHHC

Certified Holistic Health Counselor

I am holistic health coach with a certificate from the Institute for Integrative Nutrition. I have a Master’s Degree in Nursing, and worked as a Nurse Anesthetist for over a decade. I have been trained in more than one hundred dietary theories and found my passion for the power of healing through food when I read Paul Pitchford’s Healing With Whole Foods in response to my daughter’s medical challenges.

My daughter was born with a congenital bowel defect and endured several surgeries before her first birthday. After a highly specialized surgery to render her continent at age eight, my daughter was sent home with a list of medications that were intended for use unendingly. The medications contained chemicals and food dyes meant to alter the passage of food through her gastrointestinal tract, and I couldn’t find a natural supplemental alternative. I began to research dietary solutions to her body’s response to food, digestion and elimination.

During this time of navigating my daughter’s medical condition, professionally, I was administering anesthesia to patients undergoing bariatric surgery; a process of shrinking the stomach so the patient is forced to eat less food. I knew there had to be a better way to solve the issue of obesity, and that there was more to being overweight than just eating too much.

I have learned that what we eat and what we don't eat can profoundly affect and heal our bodies. I offer personalized “roadmaps to health,” created to suit each individual’s body, lifestyle, preferences and goals.

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