Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Today at Children's Hospital

Emily had an appointment this afternoon with Dr. Batley at Children's Hospital. We've been anxiously awaiting this appointment. Dr. Batley works in the Physical Medicine Clinic at Children's and her job was to diagnose why Emily is still struggling with flexibility and mobility after a year and a half of therapy.

The appointment went really well and once again I am highly impressed with the staff at Children's and how friendly and caring they are. Emily tends to be shy around new people at first but they all interacted with her and at one point when we were scheduling our next appointment, Em sneaked into one of the doctor's offices and grabbed her by the hand to walk her down the hall and show her some toys (and the doctor very kindly obliged to Emily's request)!

Dr. Potts met with us first and we shared what we knew of Em's birth history and what we've learned from PT and Speech Therapy so far. After she gathered some information and watched Emily run up and down the hall with me a few times, she brought in Dr. Batley to join us. Dr. Batley was very sweet with Emily and answered any questions we had.

Long story short... Emily has been officially diagnosed with a mild form of Cerebral Palsy called Spastic Diplegia. If you're interested in learning more, here's a website I found this evening that explains quite a bit of the same information that Dr. Batley explained to me this afternoon.

While some kids with cerebral palsy are given braces to wear to help with walking, Dr. Batley didn't feel this would benefit Emily because her left foot in particular doesn't have a full range of flexibility without quite a bit of discomfort. She is recommending a Botox injection to help with treatment.

Fortunately, Em's PT has mentioned this type of treatment to me in the past so I didn't laugh out loud when they told me about it. The point of Botox for CP treatment is that it should help the tense muscles relax so the weaker muscles can start building back up.

I'm still in the research process at this time to make sure there are no weird side effects or anything to this treatment and if all goes well, we are scheduled to get Em's first Botox injection in mid-November. She gets checked 3 weeks after that to see how things are coming along. If it appears to be working, she'll get a shot every 3 mos. until she seems better or until we notice that it's no longer being effective.

We've been told by Dr. Batley, our physical therapist and our pediatrician that there's every reason to believe that with proper treatment, Emily will lead a normal, productive life and there's a good shot that by about age 6 her symptoms will be barely noticeable (if at all).

While this whole thing may sound like sad news to some, we're happy to hear there's a reason for what's going on. It's nice to know what's going on and what we can do about it. We're praying that we qualify for BCMH funding to help pay for Em's continued physical therapy and speech therapy and any other treatments that aren't covered by our insurance.


A 5 time mom said...

Glad you got some answers and now some direction as to what to take to help Emily. I am sure the Lord is leading and guiding you all in this and how wonderful for Emily to have you both loving her and doing all that is best for her.


Anonymous said...

I stumbled on to this blog while research Uralsk. What a surprise! I remember Nadya. I was introduced to your daughter Nov 2006 while adopting my child from BH2.

It is nice to see how beautiful she is today.

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