I guess it is finally time for an update on Addison's medical situation. I haven't written about this recently because it consumes a lot of my time/life, and I often want to write about other things. But anyways...
As you probably know, Addie was diagnosed with reflux at 3 months. She was put on a small dose of Zantac and we went on with life. It was under control (or so I believed) until she was about 5 1/2 months. She became a lot more fussy around this time, and she started waking up ALL THE TIME. Being the inexperienced mom that I am, I really chalked it up to teething.
At her 6 month checkup our doctor became concerned with her inability to gain weight. Since we were coming to Virginia to wait out the rough New York winter she suggested that we find a doctor to keep tabs on her weight. The doctor in Virginia was not too concerned with her weight at first (because she was ahead of the game on development), and even suggested we take her off of the Zantac. BIG MISTAKE!
It didn't take long to figure out that she really still needed to be medicated. She actually had silent reflux, which meant that she was swallowing all of the acid that came up. In other words, the stomach acid was going through her esophagus twice. She then got prescribed Prevacid, which never worked for her. At this point (2 1/2 months later) we were directed to a pediatric gastrointerologist.
Which brings me to our current situation...
We were referred to a doctor who was voted one of the top doctors in the Washington D.C. area. I feel as if we were in good hands. We had our first appointment in late February, and it resulted in Addie being put on some pretty hefty doses of meds. She now takes Prilosec in the morning, and Zantac at night. Her dose of Zantac is 6 times what her pediatrician had her on.
Also, the doctor wanted her to have an endoscopy and upper GI series to make sure that we were treating the right thing. She had to get anesthetized for the endoscopy, which was very hard on both of us. The doctor and staff were all very wonderful. Two areas were biopsied (both came back normal), and they were able to see that her lower esophagus is very swollen. The upper GI was much less invasive, but unfortunately for Addie it was probably the worst test. She had to drink barium (nasty, vile stuff), and then be still for the x-ray machines. Keeping Addie still is a quiet a chore. They did see her reflux the barium, but we did find out that she had no intestinal obstructions or malformations.
The medicine seems to be working and she appears to be gaining weight. We go back in a couple of weeks to make sure we are on the right track with her treatment. I feel terrible that she had to be in excruciating pain for so long. It's really no wonder why she hates to eat, and has trouble sleeping. She still doesn't have much interest in solid food, and the doctor told me that her aversions might take a long time to break.
I must say through this whole ordeal I feel I have been very fortunate on the insurance front. I LOVE Tricare, and believe that it must be one of the best aspects of military life. I have paid a total of $6 (2 prescriptions) for medical costs in the past 3 months. We never have co-pays or deductibles, and Tricare has been wonderful about getting me into the doctors I want to see even if they aren't network providers. Every cloud has a silver lining!