Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Swallow Study = Success!

Thank y'all, so much, for the prayers and encouraging words you sent our way for this morning! I had a lot of anxiety about taking Ethan to an appointment at Duke by myself. There's just so much to coordinate and consider, and having two people really does make a difference!

God was definitely smiling down on us, though. Ethan played & "talked" the entire way to Durham, I found a prime parking a spot right in front of the elevators, and check-in was a breeze since it was so early. We waited a bit longer than I had expected to, but Ethan wasn't bothered at all by the fact he hadn't slept or eaten. Then, when we were finally called back, I realized our favorite Duke speech therapist would be performing the study; that was like icing on the cake!

We talked for a bit about Ethan's current oral feeding regimen, then went down to radiology for the study. It was so comforting to be with someone who already knew Ethan and his quirky eating ways; she was so patient and loving with him!

For the study, she mixed some squash with the barium to see how he would do with that consistency. It took some time, and a little coaxing, to get Ethan to actually swallow the stuff but he eventually did it! He didn't hold back from letting us know how mad he was about it, though.

After the radiologist got some pictures of those first few swallows, we moved to liquid barium. Neither the speech therapist or I thought it was going to go well, given the fact he was SO upset at that point. Ethan surprised us, though, and took some from his sippy cup. The radiologist was able to get pictures of 3 different swallows that time! I will say that I was a little concerned because Ethan started "sputtering" and his cries sounded gurggly afterwards. Both of those things are prime indicators of aspiration, and I just knew he had sucked the liquid into his lungs. However, after looking at the pictures, both the speech therapist and radiologist agreed that he did NOT aspirate!

Y'all, that is HUGE!

Even through all the crying and kicking, he managed to protect his airway and swallow the liquid appropriately. We were all very pleased to see that! And, it reassured me that when he coughs, gags, and sputters at home he is most likely not aspirating his food!

So, now what?

The speech therapist recommended that we move ahead, with caution. Given that Ethan did not aspirate the thin liquid, we are free to offer him all different types of textures and consistencies, which we will do under the guidance of our incredible speech therapist here in Raleigh. Dr. H will look at the results of the study and decide his course of action for the (possible) removal of Ethan's adenoids. Jeramie and I will continue to work on oral feeds at home and watch for any seriously obvious signs of aspiration.

And Ethan? He'll keep blowing raspberries, clapping his hands, and being the oh-so-adorable eight month old baby that he is.

Just the way we like it.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

This is good news Joye.

Happy Thanksgiving to you, Jeramie and the oh-so-adorable eight month old baby that we love to pieces!!

I hope you guys have a very special day today with your Mom, Dad and Jesse, as I am sure you will.

I am looking forward to seeing you guys on Saturday.

Love Grandma A.

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