They took a doctor prescribed altitude acclimation pill (can't recall it's name) for each of the two days before the hike and then spent a few hours at 10,000' yesterday (the day before), but that clearly was insufficient to acclimate our son who got very sick.
(1) everyone acclimatizes at different rates
(2) Sounds like they took Diamox(acetozolamide). It has limited efficacy, despite all the hoopla and MD-prescribing and climbers-requesting. Study after study show that it is not a slam dunk drug at all. Helpful sometimes, sometimes not.
Far, far better is Steve's advice for time, time, time. Your body needs time to adjust to hypobaria (lower air pressure) . Then there are lucky people who seem to do well anyway, at least at moderately high altitude like 14,000 ft for a day. Congratulations for your wife.