Either I’m Italian, or you’ve been having too much milk!12 July , 2012
Photo cath-up first:
- Nicola making “tea” – at first she wanted to play with my mom’s porcelain tea pot but I convinced her this was the way to go for now.
- The Oupa-swing
- Nicola put this outfit together herself (it might actually look better now without the diaper on, but it was still cute!)
- Serious face that often goes along with “Mamma, hou op fotos neem van my!”
Right, back to the topic at hand…
Firstly, thanks for all your comments on the previous posts regarding the tonsils and blood tests. It means a lot to me. Things aren’t necessarily as simple as they seem though, which I kind of suspected due to the fact that we were reffered to another specialist to devine the meaning of the results instead of just getting a recommendation for an iron supplement and a new due date for the tonsilectomy. I must confess that the moment I got a call with the words “white blood cells” in the conversation I panicked because TGC’s mother died of cancer and if I remember correctly it was leukemia. It’s not that though, which is already fantastic news in itself (breathes a massive sigh of relief!).
We went to go see this new doctor yesterday. The main concern is actually the small red blood cells, and according to her there can be two possible explanations for it. The first and least serious is just a lack of iron. Nicola is on a very intensive course of treatment for that right now. What could cause such an iron deficciency at 2,5 years you might ask? Well, the doctor thinks that drinking large quantities of cows milk could possibly make it worse because there is no iron in it, unlike formula. Could she get the iron replenished through regular diet or eating iron rich foods (and drinking far less milk). Yes, but it could take up to 2 or 3 years to get it back up to where it should be with diet alone. So…after a week we need to go get a new test to see if the supplements have made any difference and if that’s the case we just continue with it at the regular dosis instead of the double dose we’re doing for this week and all will be well (I’m really rooting for this diagnosis).
If it makes no difference in the results then it’s likely that Nicola has Thalassemia (I know right? Never heard of it before either). It’s a genetic blood disorder more prevalent in people of Mediterreanian descent (which is why the doctor asked my if I was Italian…and I’m not, as far as I know – but anything is possible I suppose?). Even if it is this there is some good news. Firstly, based on the blood tests so far, if she has it she has it in a minor case (people who have this in a major case need multiple blood transfusions and bone marrow transplants, and they generally do not have a long life expectency). She is in no immediate danger. The disorder also provides the carrier with resistance to malaria and heart disease. If she has it she should probably stop taking the iron though because it interferes with the absorption and could poison her kidneys and whatnot (it’s all in the Wikipedia atrickle I linked – fascinating stuff).
In any case, we just don’t know yet – but by end of next week we should know, and also what the next steps are in treating it. If it is the second thing then I will need to have a bloodtest too to check out my hemoglobins (I feel like I should wear a lab coat with all the terms I’m slinging around 😉 ). And if she has it but I don’t have it, I should probably tell TGC (aka Bio-dad) to have the test too (and also his son) – all bridges to burn when we get there, if we get there at all.
It’s probably not serious. I’m probably stressing for nothing. But STRESSING I am (don’t be startled if you see me without any eye lashes, I’ve noticed one of my stress responses is to start yanking them out!). This is my baby we’re talking about. My world! If she needs help I want to know about it and I want to be able to give it to her. (also, it would be great if I didn’t give her the problem to begin with, just for my own peace of mind and so on). I know it’s a bit premature to worry about the worst case scinario, but I’d rather be prepared than not – I’m sure you can all relate.
Okay…so now that I’ve got it all written down I can calm myself down to a mild panic and just take one day at a time till we know for sure what the problem is and what to do about it.