Tuesday, March 30, 2010

great news and good (?) news

Sometimes Logan blows me away. Really. Today was one of those days. How many 5 year olds do you know who can sit through 4 hours of doctor appointments without grumbling, complaining, whining, crying, or even getting slightly bent out of shape?? Me either. Until now. Apparently they DO exist--one lives at my house!

We arrived just before 10AM this morning, got our 'clinic visit' badge (they actually gave me a long term badge good until the end of April since we'll be there so often the next 4 weeks), then got checked in. After a 5 minute wait we were called back and given lovely seats overlooking the courtyard. Logan and I played games for a few minutes, then the first Dr. came out to see us and take us back to the exam room. It was a computer lover's dream room--all sorts of computers and monitors and printers everywhere. In this room the Dr. did eye movement testing and the rotary chair test. We started off with some real simple things. Logan followed the directions very well but didn't do well during this part of the exam. From there, we went to watch a 'movie.' Logan was seated in a chair and had some goggles placed on him. The goggles are wired to a computer and with mirrors and special lenses, they track his eye movements as he watched some very specific movies. To me, it was like watching test patterns on the TV. Only these were black and grey! Then came the moving smiley face with the big red nose. After probably 30 minutes of watching movies, Logan was strapped in to the rotary chair and tested again. This time his goggles looked like something Batman would wear. Once he was buckled in and wired up, they started the chair. This chair spins! His job was to keep his head still and his eyes open and watch the inside of the Batman goggles (in the dark--they were totally black!) while he went in circles at a variety of speeds. The results from all these tests would be shared with the ophthalmologist.

Then we went to a regular exam room. After having his eyes checked by the nurse, the other Dr. came in and gave him a quick once-over. Once those things were done, it was time for the dilating drops. Because Logan has very dark brown eyes, he got 2 drops in each eye to begin with. Fifteen minutes later, his eyes still weren't dilated, so he received another set of drops. UGH! Once they finally got fully dilated, we saw the Dr. again. When he was done examining Logan he let us know that Logan has great vision--no need for glasses! That was excellent news! He IS a bit nearsighted and his vision is still at the low end of normal but simply monitoring it every two years is sufficient at this point. YAY!!

Dr. Weiss then shared with me the findings from the morning's eye movement testing. Not surprisingly, Logan has visual/vestibular balance issues. For whatever reason, it's fairly common in children who are hard of hearing. We know he has inner ear issues. We know he has balance issues. It's nice to know that the two are in fact related. Once the full report is ready, I'll get a copy. Hopefully it will have suggestions to help him deal with the trouble. It's NOT fun to fall out of chairs at the dinner table. But it happens to Logan. Fairly regularly, in fact. Dr. Weiss says it's normal for kids with his degree of difficulty. For now, we're in a wait and see mode, but relieved to know that his problems are not because we're missing something, they're because his wiring is faulty! It's nice to have a clearer picture of what the appropriate level of expectation is for Logan. And when I said a long time ago that perhaps "professional athlete" wasn't a likely career for him? Well, it looks like I was right on target.

So, the great news is that Logan doesn't need glasses. The good news is that he DOES, in fact, have a visual/vestibular dysfunction. Now that the balance problem has a diagnosis, we can move forward with a treatment! God ALWAYS provides what we need--even if it's not exactly what we want.

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