Saturday, April 10, 2010

The Back-of-the-Leg Test

As I've mentioned before, Elliot is prone to danger and bruising. So invariably when we take him to the doctor, he'll have an assortment of bruises, scrapes and cuts — especially on his face and shins (the two major impact points when Elliot launches himself at the world).

Since doctors and nurses know how rambunctious toddlers can be, I didn't think they would ever suspect us of abuse. That is, until I discovered they were doing the back-of-the-leg test on Elliot.

Apparently it's not alarming for a child to have bruises on his shins, but you really don't want bruising on the back of the legs. That tells the doctor that the injuries are no accident.

So every time Elliot comes in for a checkup, the medical staff takes one look at him and then checks the back of his legs (where, fortunately, he does not have bruises). Kelly only discovered what this meant recently when she asked the nurse and got an explanation. I wasn't there at the time, but I certainly hope Kelly responded by saying, "Oh no, you dih-n't."

The lessons here: (1.) Doctors trust no one. (2.) Parents shouldn't let their children walk backwards. If the kid injures the back of his legs, Child Protective Services will be making a visit soon.