Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Doctor Appointment, Asthma and Allergies

Ok, I haven't updated about our doctor experiences in a while.  I'm a little behind........a newborn will do that to you!

Well, we saw our immunologist back in November.  Our original appointment was scheduled for October but Bee got a cold, bronchitis, and the beginnings of pneumonia that month.  We were super super sick at our house!  So, we cancelled that appointment and rescheduled for early November.

I took Bee and Tiger to the appointment.  Tiger saw the pulmonary specialist.  Over the summer, a pediatrician had "diagnosed" Tiger with asthma.  He had several respiratory infections and lots of coughing.  But I didn't think he had asthma and I didn't want that in his records.  I didn't want endless doctors pushing daily meds on him when I didn't think he needed anything.  I wanted him evaluated by a specialist to see if he really had asthma.  I also wanted to know if he had some environmental allergies that were causing all the respiratory issues, so he saw our allergist/immunologist right after meeting with the pulmonary specialist.

The pulmonary specialist checked Tiger over and listened to my explanation of our summer sickness.  She said he was too young to do the official "asthma" test where you have to breathe into a machine.  She felt the results would not be accurate for him.  So, after listening to him and asking me dozens of questions about coughing, breathing, exercise, wheezing, and colds, she felt he did not have asthma at this point and should not be treated.  Yay!  Exactly what I thought!

Then he got to move into another room and wait for the allergist/immunologist.  That doctor came in and we discussed the information from the pulmonary specialist.  Then it was time for allergy testing.  They did an environmental panel all across his back.  I was so worried that we would be upset.  He was a trooper and the sticks didn't even phase him.  He just watched Mickey Mouse on the iPad.  We even had "child life specialists" in the room to help out-they are like super nanny and come equipped with fun toys to help you distract your child.  They spent the whole time blowing bubbles with Bee and Ladybug.  They had a blast!

We waited for the results of the allergy panel and I just knew that it would be negative.  Sure enough, he had little to no reaction to any of the allergens they tested him for.  They measured each spot on his back and the doctor brought the results in to discuss with us.  She didn't feel he had any significant allergies and thought that he had just had a rough summer with reoccurring respiratory infections.  He's clear!

Bee was next.  The doctor discussed all of her progress, checked her for eczema (she was clear!) and talked about her recent reactions.  There was not a whole lot of new info to give her.  Bee's not on any meds and only has an occasional bit of Cortizone cream when she has a rash and maybe an occasional Benadryl if she's really itchy.  Other than that, she takes no daily meds and only uses her inhaler in the few times that she's been sick and wheezing.  Our doctor was so pleased with her progress and thought we just needed to continue with what we were already doing.

But what about testing?  I love seeing Bee's numbers go down.  It gives me such hope.  So, we were expecting the doctor to order another round of testing.  No such luck.  She felt that most kids don't start showing significant improvement until after the age of 4 and actually closer to age 5.  Our doctor wanted to test Bee again in a year.  That's such a long time to wait!  She thought that all of Bee's allergies were still there-even if the numbers were lower.  I know the allergies are there too, but I still like seeing those numbers.  But I don't want to put Bee through testing unless there is a chance that something has significantly changed.  So, we agreed to wait on the testing until next year.  When we do the testing we'll do another RAST test to check her IgE levels.  We'll also do some skin testing for coffee, pineapples, coconuts, soy, and possibly eggs and bananas.

We're praying for great results in November!

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