We hope so, anyway!
Verity spent a few hours at the Clinic for Special Children yesterday.
She saw Dr. Chowdhury and had another echocardiogram. Typically, technicians perform the echoes and the doctors just read the results later. Yesterday, Dr. Chowdhury watched the echo for a while, then took over and finished doing it herself. She found that Verity has a very small ventricular septal defect (VSD) that last week’s echo missed.
We thought this new finding was very ironic, considering that last week’s echo appointment (with higher-quality equipment at the Hershey Children’s Heart Group) cost about ten times as much as this week’s echo appointment! $3332 compared with $323!
Dr. Chowdhury was very pleased with Verity. She said that the VSD won’t cause any noticeable problems, the leakiness of the valves has not increased since last week, we can cut the dosage of Lasix in half, and we don’t need to see her again until the end of October!
Then Verity was seen by Dr. Strauss. He said that she is not aspirating when she eats, but she does have upper airway congestion as well as noisy breathing due to her mouth and throat position. He said this is present in virtually 100% of babies with Down syndrome. She also has reflux. We’ll be trying to manage it by adding a little rice cereal to her milk to weight it down and keep it from coming back up.
I approved of him for three reasons. One, he is a good teacher and took time to answer my questions with clarity and detail. (Just like Dr. Morton did.) Two, he was able to draw blood for Verity’s thyroid bloodwork on his very first attempt! (After the nurse gave up and went to find him!) And three, he gave me sound advice. He said that Verity is a beautiful person, and a beautiful part of our family, and that we should try to avoid seeing her in terms of her medical problems. We’ll take care of those as they arise, but we should do our best to keep them in the background where they belong, and enjoy this little person for who she is.
Since yesterday, her congestion has turned into a full-blown head cold, so she’s not sleeping well. When she’s awake, she is fussy due to the cold and to her increasing irritation with the feeding tube. So I’m giving her a merciful break from the camera for the time being!