Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Bullet Dodged

The cough is just a cold.  It sounds bad to me, but none of the doctors are worried about it.  They plan to go forward with chemo starting Thursday.  The cough is still bad, but it's not in her chest, it's not RSV, and it's normal.  Luckily, the doctors are very understanding that this is our first baby, and she has never been sick (like most "normal" babies), so this is all new to me on top of the cancer.  I have license to worry more than others.

The swollen fontanel was a false alarm.  I learned today how exactly to check it:  she must be upright and calm, and NOT wrapped in a baby carrier that compresses her body.  Anything that raises her blood pressure or changes the displacement of fluid in her head can affect the fontanel, and that is exactly what was happening.  So, no shunt.  Again.  Whew.

She passed her hearing test with flying colors.  Both ears tested well.  Baby ears are tested for resonance from tones played to the ear drum.  The feedback is measured to determine if the ear structures are functioning properly.  We have to check her hearing frequently because one of the chemo drugs is "ototoxic", or is likely to damage hearing.  I have a feeling it is only going to get harder as she gets older; today she slept through the whole process, but I doubt that will be the case for much longer.

She also had her first port blood draw.  It was so much easier than I had anticipated.  Because the port is completely under the skin, it is easy to access and less likely to be infected.  We use a lidocaine cream one hour before access is needed, cover it with Press and Seal wrap, and it is ready to be painlessly drawn from.  She didn't even flinch when they stuck the needle in.

So after a long day of appointments, she is home, coughing and sleeping.  I am taking a bath to relax after all the running around.  Tomorrow we pack.  Thursday, chemo.

28 comments:

The Howitts said...

As always we are praying for your wonderful family. You guys are an inspiration! And Scarlett... Words cannot begin to define her. She is amazing, but that does not even cover it. Much love to you guys!

BrownFamily said...

great news, she's so strong!! you will all be in my thoughts and prayers come Thursday!

LeAnn Resh in Fremont, CA said...

You 3 simply amaze me!!!! I'm sooo happy & thankful for all the continued progress she keeps making---what an inspiration to all!! I continue to pray for her recovery and for many future blessings to come your way--you 3 deserve that and so much more! I pray for the day when this is all but a distant memory and the two of you and Miss Lil' Butterfly can soar to new heights! Will be thinking about the 3 of you very strongly come Thursday, I just know she will handle this part of the journey just as well as she did the first. Hang in there Brandi & Chris--we are all rooting for you! Sending love to you 3~ LeAnn, Mike, Michaela & Landon Resh

Jennifer said...

Good luck! I continue to pray for you and baby scarlett and check you blog everyday for updates. She is so string and I have faith she will pull through this whole ordeal. Hugs and prayers!
Jennifer BBC July 2010- San Francisco

Anonymous said...

Sorry you have to worry about a cough on top of everything else, but at least the doctors aren't concerned. The port sounds like it's doing its job and making those blood draws easier. What a strong baby you have. She is so lucky to have you all in her life!

Jamie - BBC Oct 2010 said...

thank you for keeping us up to date...and educating us with some of the details!
any FTM would worry :) but..she will be fine...
you're doing so great!

Anonymous said...

praying continues! I hope tomorrow's first round of chemo goes smoothly.

Much love sent to your family.

Sarah said...

so glad all is good. my son has a cough right now too and it sounds so much worse than it really is.

Jen D. said...

Thinking of you all!

Amy Biagini said...

Glad you avoided the shunt again, hoping all the best for you guys!

Sandy said...

Whew and whew! That is good news all around. Best of thoughts and love heading your way.

Jamie- BBC Sept 2010 said...

Bless you both and your baby girl. Reading your battle has made me realize the strength people hold in themselves. Keep fighting.

Anonymous said...

Once again I am brought to tears at how strong Scarlett is! I am so happy to hear that the cough is just a cough, and nothing more. Hugs to your family, and I will be thinking and praying for y'all tomorrow.

Anonymous said...

Best of luck to Scarlett! I'm so amazed!

alex said...

Best of luck on Thursday! Glad to hear her cough was just a cold. Whew!

Anonymous said...

Did they give you any advice for the cough? I wish we could do more to help them with the coughs. What good news overall...and happy that your puppy home again. :) That is so good about the port too that it didn't bother her!

We got an ear test done too. They do some sort of innital thing and then they hook up all the receptors which takes major skill to hold a baby and keep those things on!! lol. I think I held baby for one side then the other side I set baby down in the carseat. This was around 2-3 months and the paci worked great. I know you'll try things that work for your family. I was gonna say maybe a tv show but you have to be quiet..."keep child awake 3 hrs" righhhttt... But, maybe if you have a smart phone or a pocket tv that could help keep the attention with the images once she's older. Hmm...just an idea. I know you all will get that figured out though. :)

Anonymous said...

you know I think Scarlett is restoring alot of peoples faith. I keep praying for her.

B said...

Best of luck tomorrow for the first round! Shes already proved to be able to battle life's burly twists, this will be a breeze! As always, I'll be praying! :)

rebecca said...

Its defintely something going around world-wide its horrible: my son (8 months) had a really bad cough also he would wake up while coughing and hed get choked up that hed puke i rushed him to the Dr. i dont even know how many times i lost track as this continued for 3 solid weeks this being the 4th week hes very much better right now!! This weather is just the sbsolute worst (just hate the cold/sick bugs)
--GOOD LUCK!! PRAYING FOR YOU THREE AS ALWAYS!!

amanda said...

So glad to hear she's still doing so well!! Prayers for you Thursday. You can do this beautiful girl!!!

Lacey said...

I have been following your blog daily and it makes me so happy to see how well she is doing. I hope tomorrow's session goes well! Thinking of your family from across the USA

Anonymous said...

I am very happy to hear that her cough was nothing serious, likewise with her fontanel.
Please know that We are praying for baby Scarlett in Boston, MA (As always! ) Good Luck and God Bless you both and the littlest butterfly : )

Noelle
July 2010
Cafemom

Lindsey said...

I am praying for Scarlett and you guys as chemo starts today. My thoughts go to Scarlett often as it is.

Sheila said...

Praying for you as you head on to the next part of your journey. Stay strong little love!

Anonymous said...

Praying that today's treatment goes well! Stay strong, little butterfly!

Anonymous said...

Scarlett is in my prayers again today as she starts chemo. Scarlett's strength is inspiring and I believe in your little girl's ability to someday put all of this behind her. Lots of love from Alaska,
Heather and DD, Lindsey. BBC July 2010

Mersida said...

Good luck. I hope the first day goes well today.
Hugs from PA.

Anonymous said...

Sending good thoughts your way on Scarlett's first day of chemo. I can't imagine what you guys are going through, but I've held my baby tighter and been a better mother because of her story.