Monday, November 06, 2006

More ultrasounds

Last Friday we had yet another ultrasound. Also, the results of our quad-screen blood test came in that day. The result of both wasn't vastly different than what we already knew. It looks like the little man has one kidney that is dialated (which means something is keeping it from draining normally). The other kidney actually looked normal, which is very nice to hear--people can survive quite well with one healthy kidney. They checked my own kidneys as well, because there is a correlation between the defect on my ear and kidney problems, but mine are normal (makes sense, as I've never had problems).

We still have only a single artery in the cord, instead of the normal 2, which means they're going to watch me carefully to make sure that the baby is growing at a healthy rate. The doctor did point out something new, that the length of the femur is shorter than expected. He mentioned that this can be a "soft" marker for Down's syndrome, but we don't seem to have other indications. I don't know if this will turn out to be anything to worry about or not. We do come from small families (one of my grandmothers is less than 5' tall), though I'm sure the expected size takes into account variations based on genetics. I haven't been able to find much online about what this means, so for now we're not worrying too much about it.

The blood test showed a 1 in 9000 chance of having a baby with Down's Syndrome, which is pretty low, so it seems unlikely that we have that to work with. We would have to do an amniocentesis to be sure there aren't any chromosomal abnormalities, but since that test involves risks (from cramping to possible miscarriage), we aren't going to do it at the moment. I believe that it can be done later in pregnancy, and towards the end can give clues to how well a baby's lungs are developing, so we may revisit the question at some point, but not now. We could also wait untill after the baby is born to have him tested, which might be our best bet for now.

What all this means at the moment is that I'll be getting more ultrasounds. I have 3 of them already scheduled, every 4 weeks. They will watch how the kidney is developing, and the fluid levels, and the baby's growth. I guess we may get follow up on the femur thing too.

I guess for now we're relaxing a bit. There's not much more that we can do for the little guy at the moment except to take care of myself and try to project happy, healing thoughts his way. And I get to enjoy every kick and wiggle.


the squeaky mouse gets the cheese said...

Thinking of you 4... hope all continues to go well (or well enough) at ultrasounds. Been there, done way too many of them when we were worried about the first baby--all ended up just being prevention, which is good.

Mmissed you at Halloween. Let's have a playdate sometime.


Amanda said...

It's great that we have such technology these days and are able to find out so much. It's saved many lives, but they also sometimes cause more worry. Baby boy will be in our thoughts. :)

Moe said...

one can only be truly blessed as to have a child with down syndrome.

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