Wednesday, 12 November 2008

Official Diagnosis - Grumpy

Last Tuesday Noah had an appointment with a new paediatrician - Dr Paul Porter. This is the third different one we've been to and we have found him to be very thorough and lovely as well. The first one was the hospital appointed one from when Noah was born (we weren't very keen on him), the second one was the paediatric kidney specialist so Dr Porter will be Noah's general paediatrician for the foreseeable future.

When we saw Dr Porter last week he gave Noah a pretty thorough exam and had a really long chat with me about everything that has gone on and all the different courses of treatment we've pursued so far. He agreed with me that Reflux seemed not to be the problem despite most Doctors keen urge to diagnose this for every unsettled baby. However he put us on a 1 week trial of Reflux medication just to be sure. As guessed it had no effect and we have scrapped taking it. He expressed some concerns about Noah's general development and as a result that afternoon we were off to PMH for a brain scan. At this young age they are able to ultrasound the brain through the fontanelle (soft spot) - Noah slept through the whole thing and it turned out to be a very simple procedure. A couple of days later we got a message on our answering machine letting us know that it was all clear but to go in for a follow up appointment yesterday.

Yesterday I went in for the appointment and Noah and I ended up staying the night in Joondalup Hospital. It was 16 weeks almost to the hour since the same thing happened during my pregnancy. Show up for a quick appointment and then you don't get to go home - very dramatic. Anyway this was nothing to worry about just a wonderful caring Dr doing everything he can to help us out with our very unsettled little man.

The idea was for us to stay in the kids ward for 48 hours being fully monitored by the various nurses and doctors so they could see how he behaves and attempt to make some conclusions about what is going on with him. In the end we only stayed 24 hours but it was a thoroughly worthwhile exercise and it gave us some answers even though there are no actual solutions.

First of all we were given extensive validation that he his in fact extraordinarily unsettled and cries an excessive amount. In fact a couple of the nurses were gobsmacked at the amount and the severity of his crying/screaming spells (good to know we're not just being wusses!!). We were also given some reassurances about his development. The registrar confirmed that his physical strength is significantly delayed (head stability and general body tone in particular) and that his social interaction is also behind but there is no discernible reason for any of it and he will more than likely meet all his milestones a bit late but he will get there.

As far as his 'grumpiness' the doctors felt that he suffers from general wind and digestive problems and is just an overly sensitive baby who can't cope well with that situation. The only cure will be time and we just have to manage it and wait for him to grow out of it.

So it has been a huge week but Rob and I feeling really good about things and are just going to relax about Noah now and get on with it. No more Doctors, no more medicine, just time, it seems, is all he needs.

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