Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Where can I get an accurate swallow study done?

When I wrote that last post I was feeling the dread of dealing with the stomach flu over Easter. Well, that went away around 2 am when Goldie drank a cup of juice and kept it down. My husband decided that would be a good time to give me the whole story about what preceded the puking.  He had Goldie with him, visiting the neighbor. She had a little glass and was playing with their water cooler. Filling the glass, trying to drink from it and spilling it all over the place. For most 3 year olds this would be good, clean fun. (Unlike yesterday when she came in covered in tractor grease...) The only problem is that Goldie can't drink thin liquids without choking. Which is what happened. She choked and coughed so hard that she threw up her dinner. It took over an hour to empty her stomach because of her diastasis recti.

WARNING: This next part talks about vomit and you may think its gross.

This brought about another interesting discovery. She didn't chew her dinner. She swallowed her ham whole. The pieces were the same size I had cut them. I don't cut her food teeni tiny either. I don't know if this is a one time thing or not. She has had on OT and an SLP watch her eat. They always tell me how well she chews and moves the food around her mouth. I've given her steak cut in strips and she is able to bite pieces off and chew them. Hmm.

My biggest worry though is that she still can not drink liquids without me adding Thick-It to them. This is why I am glad she is still breastfeeding. It is the one sure way I have of getting fluids in her, even when she's sick. We had a swallow study done last year and were told that everything looked fine and she would outgrow it. Since then I've talked to other parents, whose kids have feeding tubes, and they had the same experience. Only to find later, with a scope, that their child had something physically wrong that prevented them from being able to eat and/or drink.

I know she needs another swallow study done. It annoys me that they pretty much wasted our time last year. I had it done then because I didn't want to be toting the baby along to all these appointments.  Any advice on how to get this done right?

And to make things even more fun, I need to have outpatient surgery this summer. I wish I could get it over with sooner, but we booked a vacation. The nerve of us, thinking we could get away for the first time in 5 years. Regardless, I will work very hard at relaxing,  despite all the medical loose ends waiting to be tied up.


Mel said...

Poor little Goldie, that's no fun at all. No help in the where to get a swallow study done sorry. Good luck.

Erin said...

Poor thing. I would ask your Speech Therapist about getting one done or if your hospital has a feeding clinic they should be able to do one there. Otherwise I am sure your Ped would know where to go.

SunflowerMom said...

Poor girl! I bet the ham thing is just an occassional fluke if you've seen her move food properly in the past. Sean had a swallow study last summer & they offered barium in different thickness and a barium coated/dipped cracker. They can flavor the barium with chocolate syrup or strawberry syrup, too. I believe our ENT is actually how ordered the test.

Beth said...

Oh man. I don't know anything about swallow studies, so I'm no help there.
I hope that you get some GI help so you can sort this out.
In the meantime, see if Goldie will show you her food in her mouth every so often when she's chewing. You can see if she's actually chewing or if she's just "suckling" it.

Sasha said...

I am thinking you can get it at the hospital. If they have a feeding team there see if you can get an appointment. Wysdom had an appointment with our hospital and they watched him eat and then determine if he needs a swallow study. How about making her liquids thick with fruits or veggies? I am sure you tried this. We just went to an evaluation from Talk Tools and we found out tons of info about Wysdom's mouth and eating. That maybe an avenue to look into. They have tools that help with oral motor muscle development I can e mail you more if you want.

Oh yes and that vacation thing. Well of course after 5 years you may just want to get away?:) Hugs.