Tuesday, January 15, 2013

The Second Opinion

   The day had come for our second opinion, and we were seated in yet another office filling out tons of forms. Fortunately,this neurologist accepted our insurance,and this office was directly across the street from our pediatrician's office. We would be heading right over there after our visit to discuss the outcome.
   Sitting in that waiting room made me sad, but not for us or Mikey. There were so many children in there
with serious problems, and my heart went out to them. One little boy was playing beautifully with some toys on the floor, but every few minutes his body would twitch in what was obviously an uncontrollable way. I assumed that it was Tourettes, but I may have been wrong. I did not want to stare, or make his parents feel uncomfortable, so I only glanced over in their direction every now and again. I found it interesting how his
movements had almost a timed rhythm to them. His family was obviously on a difficult journey of their own.
   When it was our turn, we met the doctor in his office and he asked us a variety of questions. He was nice enough, very matter of fact,had a bit of an accent that was tough to make out at times, and seemed very rushed. I do not remember our entire conversation, but I do remember him telling Mikey that he needed to make sure he behaved because he was putting him on probation....I  think it was an attempt at a joke, so I took it in stride.He'd see us again in six months.
    When all was said and done, he told us that he was leaning more towards PDD, Pervasive Developmental Disorder. He gave us a brief definition, and suggested that we get an MRI of Mikey's brain. He told us that he would send a report over to our pediatrician and would speak with us after the MRI results were in. We thanked him and left.
   Mike put Mikey in the car and I ran into the pediatric office to speak with them for a moment. I had a great relationship with our pediatricians because I had worked for them for ten years. Two of them met with me right away, and I remember them being quite anxious to hear what had happened. I told them, and I could see in their faces that this was not  what they had wanted to hear. They had an office full of patients, so I left, knowing they would call me later.
    That afternoon, the doctor did call and explained things a bit more. I remember him telling me that all children with autism have PDD, but not all children with PDD have full-blown autism. He then gave me a great analogy, which unfortunately , I do not remember.  He also told me that Mikey's blood work had come back and nothing was really out of the ordinary. He had been tested for a variety of things including food allergies( specifically gluten and milk), as well as Fragile X , a more severe form of autism, one in which children have a very distinct look or facial features. All negative.
  So at this point, nothing was conclusive, and we knew we were dealing with some type of developmental delay, but nothing had been written in stone just yet. If anything, this doctor at least gave me a glimmer of hope, and didn't come at me like a freight train. We still had to make an appointment for an MRI, but I was starting to think that maybe I wouldn't, and I didn't. Instead, I began to do a little research of my own. I had already grown tired of being rushed or treated in a rude manner when I was asking questions. If the doctors didn't have enough time or consideration to answer, I would find out the answers for myself, and that is exactly what I did. I also never stepped foot in any neurologist's office again.



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