Tuesday, February 11, 2014

6 Month Well Check and Cardiologist

The trio had their 6 month well check last Thursday (though they're really closer to 7 months old).  Here are the highlights for each child:

James-He weighed in at 15 lbs, 7 oz.  Neither the doctor or Jesse and I had any concerns.  James prefers putting weight on his legs and jumping than he does sitting or rolling over.  While looking in his mouth she said, "Those teeth are right there." James was especially silly and talkative throughout the appointment.

Amelia-Her weight was 14 lbs, 9 oz. At her last check we had expressed concern over a mildly flat head.  It has corrected itself now that she spends more time on her tummy or in a exersaucer or bumbo.

Maddie-She weighed 11 pounds even.  While she is clearly still the runt, she's holding her own.  All three babies gained around two pounds in the last two months.  The doctor was pleased that Maddie was putting on weight and has made excellent progress with trunk control.  She was concerned that Maddie is continuing to keep her fists closed and doesn't cross the midline.  For example, if Maddie has a toy in her left hand, she never puts it in her right hand.  People always comment on how sweet and dainty Maddie is because she always keeps her hands clasped together in front of her.  However, this is not developmentally appropriate for a six month old.  Our pediatrician referred us to get her evaluated and receive OT at home through early intervention services.

The babies had four vaccines each: DTaP, Hib, PCV, flu.  They go back in one month for the second dose of the flu vaccine.  At 9 months they will be caught up with all their vaccines.  (There aren't typically shots at the 9 month check, but we had a delayed scheduled.)  It took longer to sign permission the forms than it did to administer the shots, thanks to two very efficient nurses.

Unfortunately, the shots had an ill effect and all three babies were crying and ran fevers the following day.  At least one baby was up fussing every half hour throughout the night.  Amelia wouldn't keep any food down until mid-afternoon. It took until Saturday evening for the trio to return to their predictable moods and schedule.
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Maddie had her cardiologist appointment scheduled for Monday afternoon.  Scheduling the follow up was a headache in and of itself because the cardiologist was adamant that Amelia was the one with the heart murmur.  I assured the office that it was Madeline who had the echocardiogram in the hospital when she was three days old.  We finally tracked it back to original paperwork for"Baby C", which was indeed Madeline, not Amelia.

The cardiologist's office is located one floor above my MFM's office.  I felt all kinds of nostalgic navigating the parking deck, elevators, and corridors.  I was excited to listen to Maddie's heartbeat and watch the blood flow on the machine, just like when she was in utero.

The nurse, pediatric cardiologist, and ultrasound technician were completely smitten with Maddie's smiles and coos.  I don't think any of them ever made eye contact with me because they were so enamored by our sweet girl.  Before the appointment, my main concern was how Maddie's hands and feet turn purple.  Just like the pediatrician, the cardiologist also assured me that it was still typical for infants and was not a result of anything related to her heart.

The cardiologist could no longer hear the murmur and the ultrasound confirmed that the larger of the two holes has closed.  She does, however, have a PFO, which is a pinhole size heart defect.  Apparently, 1 in 5 adults has a PFO and most people with PFOs don't know they have one because they are harmless and have no symptoms.  He told me the only time it would be an issue is if she wants to go deep sea diving.  He also let me know that there are current studies about the correlation between PFOs and strokes, but there is nothing preventative or treatment for it. I'd rather not dwell on that possibility.

Maddie was very cooperative during the ultrasound.  I held her hand, not because she needed comfort, but because she kept trying to grab the cords.  The tech printed a picture for me and said, "Here's your first Valentine from her."

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