Tuesday, January 8, 2008

Follow up begins...

My first appointment was with Dr. Etheridge my pediatrician. She just wanted to make sure that I was adjusting to my new home, which I was. This visit was easy because it was in Seguin and it didn't involve any needles!

Next was a trip to the nephrologist (nephrology is the scientific study of the kidneys, particularly their functions and diseases, and a nephrologist is a physician who specializes in the kidneys. ), Dr. Irwin. She said that my kidney looked too good for me to just have one. She was sure that there was another kidney in my tummy somewhere. The function of my left kidney looks good so she said that she didn't need to see me for a few months.

Next appointment wasn't so fun. I had to get a renal scan back where I was born at the Methodist Hospital. The mean ol' nurse took three tries to finally get my IV started. She finally got it in my teeny tiny foot. This scan would determine how well my kidney was actually functioning and whether I indeed had two kidneys or just one. I was injected with radioactive fluid as it was monitored by a big machine. I was strapped down like a papoose while this was done. I was a really good boy and pretty much slept the whole time. Basically what was found by doing this test is that my left kidney was functioning beautifully, but I only had one. So after this was complete my parents took me to see Dr. Bartholomew my urologist (Pediatric urologists are surgeons who can diagnose, treat, and manage children’s urinary and genital problems). He reviewed the results with us and was pleased. He said that you only need one third of one kidney to survive so there was no need to worry! He said that I did have a little pouch off of my bladder called a diverticulum. Sometimes this little pocket collects urine, which can cause infection, this is why I've been on antibiotics since I was born. I will have to stay on antibiotics for a long time. I will be followed by Dr. B and might need surgery one day to fix the diverticulum, but we will wait and see.

My next visit was with Dr. Zwaan, my ophthalmologist. Here my right eye was dialated and it was determined that I am far sighted, which is normal for an infant. He wasn't much help with my left eye so my mommy and daddy continued their research.

Dr. Stanley was next in line for my follow ups! He is my orthopedic doctor. The first step for me here was to have x-rays taken. I was so good, but it was so hard to be still for this. Dr. Stanley says that i have two hemivertebra which equates to congenital scoliosis. (In his words.. X-rays at Methodist were reviewed on Nov. 23. It was noted at that time that he had a hemivertebra at t4, which measured 30 degrees, it is non-incarcerated and non-intercalated left hemivertibra. Repeat x-rays in our office do not demonstrate any lateral abnormalities. An AP x-ray of his entire spine showed another hemivertibra at approximately T1 with 34-degree right curve, consistent with another hemivertebra, which also does not appear to be completely intercalated. The lower curve is still evident and it too measures 30 degrees. At this point the spine appears to be well balanced.)

So the prognosis as this point is to watch me very closely. My spine may require intervention. The doctor said .. "I would suspect that a simple posterior fusion would be appropriate at the two levels. It would be, I think, because of the location of the thoracic vertebrae, it would be difficult to do a vertebrectomy and considering the counter balancing of the more proximal hemivertebrae, it would cause him to be imbalanced. I am going to see Kouper back in three months and at that time he is to have a recumbent AP x-ray of his entire spine for re-measurement of his curves."

So basically that means more follow up for me!

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