Thursday, 16 January 2014

Moving Forward

We had another hospital appointment today. It's amazing how quickly you become familiar with a hospital, well I say quickly, we've been going there for nearly six months now! Lucy has her appointments on the ward where she stayed, now as soon as we go in the nurses and helpers all know who she is.

Today we saw one of our favourite consultants. I know you shouldn't have favourites, they all do a very important job. However, there is always one that seems to listen more, take more interest and remember things better. This doctor has promised to get us a referral to a rhuematologist so we can find out what type of hypermobility she has and get a proper diagnosis. I know that in the long term the actual diagnosis is not relevent, but it will give us some answers and allow us to find the right support groups. There is no cure, no real treatment, all we can do is manage the symptoms. Of course, with a diagnosis it will mean that if Lucy has problems in the future the doctors will know where to begin. It took a long time for them to take us seriously this time, it was as if they didn't really believe that Lucy had anything but a crick in her neck at first.

Today's appointment went well. There was not much tightening to be done which pleased Lucy. She has been complaining for a couple of days of a pain in her groin area. She told the doctor and he examined her. I didn't think he would because I thought the pain was nothing to do with her neck. However, it turns out that it's possible for her lymph nodes to swell, which could be connected to the lymph nodes in her neck. She could also have pain there because of the restriction of the vest. People see the halo and think that it looks uncomfortable, but the vest is just as bad. It is fixed tight around the abdomen and can be tight under armpits too. If it gets too bad then the doctor (and only the doctor) can release it a little. Anyway, Lucy is ok at the moment, we just need to keep an eye on her and get in touch with the hospital if it gets worse, or doesn't get any better.

people don't realise that the vest is uncomfortable too.


Next step is a CT scan in a couple of weeks time. Then if all is well they will take away the halo. I asked about the procedure for taking the halo off. Normally, for adults they just take it off with a topical anaesthetic, but it does take a long time and can be distressing. For children, they prefer to give them a general anaesthetic. So Lucy will go to sleep and wake up halo free. We can't wait now.

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