....so far anyway. I should have her lab results tomorrow, or the beginning of next week. Once I have those and they look okay, THEN I can really breathe I sigh of relief. Overall, it was a really good visit.
The ride there was better than it used to be thanks to our "new to us" vehicle. The highways here are still a nightmare, Larry got to witness this for the first time and he was amazed. But, it was definitely a more comfortable, smoother ride. Jenna was for the most part comfortable the whole way. A few times when I looked back she was grimacing and trying to find a comfy position, but overall she did okay. Two hours of sitting still isn't easy on anyone really.
We got there a little ahead of our appointment and were taken in almost immediately. We saw a new doctor, I can't for the life of me pronounce his name, but he was very nice, very thorough and we all liked him, we shall call him Dr. D. He took the time to answer all of our questions and answered them in ways that we were able to understand. Gotta like that! Jenna was loose as a goose, no pain, no stiffness....NO SWELLING, NO signs of ANY active arthritis!!! WOOOOOHOOOOOO baby!!!!!!!!!! SO pleased to hear that. However, he said that given what we told him about her Fall and Winter, she likely had active arthritis then. SO, that means that yesterday was day zero on the road to being able to wean her off of meds. BOO! That is a big bummer as I thought that we started that in December of 2009 but, she is doing well now so I need to focus on that. We talked a bit about her hyper mobility. He seemed pretty amazed at how far he could overextend her joints and it not hurt her. He said that the pain that we are describing her as having (pain behind knees while seated, pain from extended walking, etc) is from her hyper mobility, not from her JIA. The good news of that is that he wants to put her in physical therapy. FUNNY, I asked the doctor that we wasted a year on about that and he said no. Hmmm....so anyway, the goal is to strengthen her muscles and tighten her ligaments and therefore, eliminate her pain :) I called today to set that up, she starts next Thursday, they said three times a week to start. WOW. Labs went great. She held still, he was in and out in the blink of an eye! I think food was her motivator but by the time we were done with the lab we were already late for her eye appointment!
On to Duke Eye Center.....we only got slightly lost in the hallways :p We arrived for her appointment thirty minutes late but they took us back fairly quickly. The resident that saw her first was great with her. He is in the right field for sure. I wish ALL peds doctors were like that. He said everything looked great to him but he knows that Dr. W likes to get a better look with another machine. It had been well over a year since they last dilated her to look behind the retina so we did that too. UGH. Poor kid apparently still remembers all of her nightmarish experiences with the doctor in Maine because she fought us like a wild animal just trying to get the dilation drops in :"( AND, they didn't take the first time, so that was a total of 40 minutes waiting for her pupils to dilate. By this point it was 2 or 3 in the afternoon, we hadn't eaten anything, and Larry had been up for 24 hours. Awesome. But anyway, Dr. W took a look with his "better equipment" saw NOTHING, looked behind the retina, saw NOTHING!!!! WOOOOOHOOOO! Eyes are still clear and holding strong! I am so very grateful for that especially given the struggles that I know so many other parents are going through right now trying to find the med combo that will work. We have been so fortunate. Dr. W said that as far as he is concerned she can start weaning anytime and he will send that recommendation over to Dr. D. But, he also said with a smile that he knows they won't go for that :) LOL!
So, that's it! We go back in three months unless something new comes up. She starts her PT next Thursday. Lab results should be ready tomorrow! Thank you to everyone that has been praying for my sweet Bean. It means more to me than I could ever express.
Oops sorry, just remembered a couple more things. We spoke with Dr. D about our troubles getting a 504 in place for Jenna. Of course, the social worker wasn't in yesterday. She will be back on Friday and he will give her the info and have her call us so that she can take care of it. This will definitely be needed now with her having PT as the latest they schedule is 5 pm and those are difficult to come by. So I may need to pull her early or bring her late. Also, I forgot to ask about the CARRA registry :( Very disappointed in myself for that. Next time though, I promise. And lastly, her official diagnosis now is extended oligoarticular juvenile idiopathic arthritis. Dang that's a mouthful!