Friday, September 21, 2007

Relief and Disappointment

The hallways of Childrens Hospital are becoming very familiar. It's good that they are decorated with trains, giraffes, fish and painted with bright, cheerful colors. It makes our repeated visits there seem somehow more positive, as if these creatures are the protectors of the all of the children who receive care there and the many colors meant to remind us of the broad spectrum of possibilities.

Grandma Janet's day with Owen was once again interrupted by another visit to the pediatrician, where Grandma Leslie met us so that we three could all advocate for Owen together. We were quite a motherly force. This was followed by a rush to make the 2:05 ferry, so that Owen could have the two GI tests done at Childrens Hospital in Seattle that would rule out pyloric stenosis and malrotation of the intestine. Grandma Leslie, with her extensive background in physiology and nursing, accompanied us as our translator, advocate, and nurturer.

The barium swallow ("upper GI") went as good as could be expected with a nine week old who hates being on his back while also being strapped down (with his arms extended above his head) and forced to eat. Can you blame him? The ultrasound that looked for pyloric stenosis was pretty easy and quick. The results of both tests were negative except for a diagnosis of decreased motility in the esophagus which the radiologist indicated is connected to the GERD (reflux).

Relief... Owen's weigh in at the pediatrician's revealed that he has gained 5.5 ounces in six days! That is right on target for normal weight gain at this age (about an ounce a day). He's been throwing up so much and eating less this past week - we thought for sure he would have lost weight. The fortified formula is obviously working. We were also very relieved that the tests at Childrens came back negative as each would have meant some form of surgery and further invasion of Owen's body.

Disappointment... The results of the tests leave us with two less things that we can point to and say, "THAT is the problem!" We are back to the initial thoughts of the discomfort stemming from GERD and the mind-body connection, i.e. Owen, given his history, being hypersensitive to pain and the goings-on in his body.

We've decided to take Owen to a naturopath, as a supplement to all of the other care he is receiving. Kelsey was given a great recommendation from a friend to see Ruth Urand in Poulsbo. We'll be talking to her about possible food allergies and other ways that we might me able to help Owen from this alternative perspective.

Off to shower and get ready for our 9 am appointment with the occupational therapist and physical therapist from Holly Ridge who are coming here to evaluate Owen for the early childhood development program. The nurse practitioner was here on Wednesday to do her assessment... We'll be meeting with all of them next week to discuss their recommendations for Owen. These are the things that feel good - knowing that there are tangible ways that we can try to help him.


Laura said...

That is great news that he gained 5.5 oz! Focus on the positive news! Love ya bunches!

Jen said...

Hang in there you guys. You are both amazing, and definitely great news on the weight gain! We think of you three all the time, and are so glad you have such a wonderful support network.

much love,
Jen and Ty

Kathryn said...

The weight gain is such wonderful news. This growth will help jumpstart the possibility for so many other positive changes. You are all working SO hard- keep up the great work. I am so glad to hear of the outside support Owen will now be recieving, in addition to the 24/7 care that Owen's loving parents (and grandparents) provide. This will equip you with more tools and new ideas to help him continue to grow and feel better.
Thinking of you all the time...wish I could visit more often.
Lots of love, Kath