Monday, November 15, 2010

Can you hear me? What?

In March, I discovered that I was having to shout to my little darling to get her to hear me.  Occasionally, that did not work either.  Children with DS tend to have hearing problems due to the anatomy of their ear (think narrow, really narrow ear canals) or auditory nerve problems.  Ellie Bear passed her newborn screen so I knew that she could hear at one point.  She does/did however had tiny little ear canals and a lot of wax.   Ellie right ear canal was so tiny that no one, not even the ear, nose, & throat [ENT] specialist could see her ear drum with their tiny specialized speculum and lumiview otoscope.

Anyway, we were already being followed by Dr. Z in ENT and when I realized that Ellie wasn't hearing so well, they got us in right away.  This is what Dr. Z found.  (I knew I should have gotten a new battery for my otoscope!)

Pus!  Lots of yucky pus behind the ear drum , thus making it rather difficult of Ellie to hear.  Chronic pus just hanging out back there :-(  My poor baby!!!!

Then we got the ear tubes.  Special ear tubes--the titanium bobbin PETs because the other ones wouldn't fit down the ear canal.   These things are fabulous as they allow the nasty pus to drain out of the ear drum and out of the canal.  Improved hearing and decreased pain!  Ta da!  The downside is the bobbin tubes tend to fall our after only 6 months.  

We made it 8 months.  Ear tubes are out.  Ear drums look perfect.  Ear canals have grown enough that Dr. Z can easily visualize the ear drum.  The down side, our flight to St. Louis for Christmas will probably bother her ears.


Anyway, we are not officially discharged out of ENT.  We probably never will be, but now we just get to follow up to make sure her hearing is good, the wax is cleared out, and she doesn't end up with recurrent/chronic fluid behind the ear drum.

ENT photos courtesy of

Now for some fun Ellie pictures.  Pay attention to Sophie's face.

"Come on!  Throw it already!"

"Is she ever going to throw that bone?"

Crawling to the camera.

"Yes!  I finally got my bone back!"

That is my daughter, being goofy.  Oh and attacked by the Tickle Monster!

Blanket Patrol.  Removing all of the blankets from her crib through the slats.

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