Buckle your seat belt; you’re in for a long and bumpy ride!
Loghan’s symptoms started pretty early on and continued until her diagnosis 4.5 months later. Besides the main symptoms that were shared in Loghan’s Story Part 1: The background, (<<< Check this out, if you haven’t already, to get up to speed) Loghan also had other minor issues at birth. She had mild jaundice, Nasolacrimal Duct Obstruction (that’s fancy for a plugged tear duct) and had to have a follow-up audiology visit to check her ears and hearing as she failed her initial hearing test in one ear at birth.
One of the red flags that I noticed, after being home for a few days, was that she would sometimes spit up, which is normal, but there was nothing normal about this spit up. This spit up was projectile style! My definition of projectile spit up is, “Spit up that forcefully launches from the mouth and sometimes nose, continuously, in rather large amounts.” The amount can vary, but in general, it would fill up a good size receiving blanket. The weird thing is, is that this phenomenon, as I like to say, was rare, but still caused me to worry.
Another red flag was blood and mucus in her diapers. The blood is not something every mom would probably notice, so I was told. However, poop is a conversation I frequently have with my girlfriends and is a topic I like to gross out my husband with once in a while! So, me noticing some specs of blood in my baby’s diaper was not a shock to anyone I knew. The mucus was rather consistent, but the specs or sometimes-small streaks of blood were few, but enough to make me worry and voice concern with Loghan’s pediatrician.
Below are a few pictures I sent to Loghan’s pediatrician. Scroll faster if you have a weak stomach! There are varying degrees of blood and mucus present and the dark spot surrounding the spit-up is more spit-up.
Something else that had me worried was Loghan’s fussiness. I know, babies can be colicky, but this was different. She would sometimes cry almost the entire day, inconsolably, and at points it sounded like screams of pain and that she was uncomfortable. To me, this wasn’t normal and was probably the hardest symptom to handle because I couldn’t do anything to make her feel better.
The slow weight gain was blamed on dietary sensitivities. At one point, I had cut out dairy, soy, gluten and eggs from my diet to try and rectify this assumption. I even had my breastmilk tested for calories per ounce to rule that out that as a cause. My breastmilk came back at 22 calories, which is similar and slightly better than most formulas. This was another concern because if my diet wasn’t the problem and my milk wasn’t the problem…what was?!
Another symptom that worried me was that she would always look to the left. This might not sound like a red flag, but she wouldn’t ever look the other direction unless I moved her head that way for her and held it there. We did plenty of tummy time and other things, but if she wasn’t looking left, she wasn’t happy! This also caused her to acquire a flat spot, also known as Plagiocephaly, on the left side of her head. Once Plagiocephaly was identified, this led to the diagnosis of a condition called Torticollis (tightness on one side of the neck) and physical therapy.
Lastly, a symptom not listed above, but in hindsight could have been a red flag for hospital staff. After reading more about diaphragmatic hernias, I ran across a snippet explaining that babies with this condition have a harder time swallowing which can lead to a larger intake of amniotic fluid. The first day in the hospital, we had a scare as Loghan turned blue and could not breathe. As my husband, Paul frantically ran to find a nurse I was trying to pat her back to hopefully help her breathe. When she returned from the nursery, the nurse explained they had to suction out her tummy because she had a large volume of amniotic fluid in her stomach. The nurses told us that this was “normal”.
That, my friends, is my mom version of Loghan’s symptoms that had this mama worried and on a mission to do and try anything to figure out what was really going on.
The next post in this series, Loghan’s Story Part 3: Doctor Referrals will go over the different referrals that were made by Loghan’s pediatrician and the frustrations that went along with them.
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