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Tis the Season

Posted Dec 21 2012 10:01pm
Yesterday I had Drew's two month well-baby exam.  I expected the usual rigamarole of weigh in, "baby looks great", and vaccines.  The vaccines were my biggest worry.

It started out as expected.  Weigh in determined that Andrew is FIFTEEN POUNDS exactly; 88th percentile.  It is clear that the boy loves his milk and Mama is apparently making cream! 

Dr. S came in and laughed out loud at my HUGE baby, who  was laying on the exam table in only a  diaper and a huge smile.  "He's SO BIG!" she exclaimed.  "I  KNOW!"  I  responded. 

We talked about any concerns that I had.  My only "concern" with Andrew is that he is still sleeping pretty poorly.  He has a midnight bedtime and sleeps pretty fitfully.  He also "snorts" a lot, so I figured that he also had the same enlarged adenoids as his big brother, but that isn't really a big deal.  Enlarged adenoids in and of themselves aren't indications for removal.  It is only if they cause problems, as they did with Will (chronic ear and sinus infections that didn't clear easily), necessitating their removal.  I figured we'd probably face that with Drew, but although it is never fun to put your toddler under anesthesia, I also know it's a pretty risk-free procedure that yields excellent results.

We commiserated over his sleep (or lack thereof).  She made note of the snorting and my suspicion of enlarged adenoids.  And then she started with the exam.  Three  babies  with  the  same doctor,  and  I  know  what to expect  from her.   So  when  she  lingered.  .  .  and  lingered . .  . and  lingered over his  chest with the stethoscope.  . . and  lingered some  more, I felt my own heart  starting to  beat a bit faster.  She moved on anddidn't  say  anything and I figured I was just  over-analyzing things.

While she was examining him, she also asked  me about his  tongue, which  he almost ALWAYS  has out.   It is simply one of his endearing traits.  .  .  or so I thought.

She went back to his chest.  And lingered there for what seemed like a year (in reality, it was probably two or three minutes, but that is still a long time).   Finally, she turned to me and said,  "We haven't heard a murmur before, have we?"

No.  We have not.

After the episode where he stopped breathing after his birth and had to spend time in the NICU, there hasn't really been much else.  We were hospitalized for his jaundice , which I was a bit glad for, as it meant extra monitoring, and still nothing.  No murmur, despite many pediatricians having their stethoscopes to him.

So, yeah, NO.  We haven't heard a murmur before.

Then she asked me how he was doing with lifting his head while on his tummy.  I admitted that we haven't been doing a great job with tummy time. He hates it, I am in survival mode, blah, blah, blah.

She went back to his chest.  And then handed me the stethoscope.  "I want you to hear this," she said.

And I could clearly hear something that didn't sound right; a whooshing sound between beats.  A decisively LOUD murmur.  She explained that murmurs can be benign; that they are often transient, without specific cause or need for concern, but. . .

BUT.

"If it were my child, I would want an echo done."

And, the tongue thing?  That is a sign of hypotonia .  And go ahead and google it. Hypotonia is not a disease in and of itself.  It is a symptom.  Of really bad things.

So, we have a barage of appointments at Seattle Children's Hospital next week.  Even with Christmas, we were triaged in with the cardiac and neurology center.  With Will's referral to Children's for his enlarged adenoids, I didn't hear from the ENT office for a week and then we waited for months for an appointment.  With Andrew's referral?  They called me within an hour. And our appointments are in less than a week and we have been placed on the priority waiting list.

And I am scared.




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