Thursday, January 29, 2009

UPDATE On My Bloodwork

Well at last weeks appointment I had blood work done to check a few things. The one we were waiting on the results for was the test to see if I had antibodies for the fifths disease the boys had over the holidays. Alittle background, fifths disease is a super common childhood disease. It starts off with cold like symptoms, (runny nose, sore throat, cough) and then about a week to ten days after the symptoms you get a rash on your cheeks. It's also known as "slapped cheeks syndrome" because a rash will appear on your cheeks and it resembles the look of being slapped on the face. Once the rash appears you are no longer contagious, hints there is no way to avoid exposure! It's so common that on average 75% of people have it in adolescence and like the chicken pox, once you get it you never get it again!

So Justin came down with it first right before Christmas, probably being exposed at school before break. Then about 4 days after Christmas he got the rash and then about a week later Nick and I got the rash. When the pediatricians diagnosed Justin after the rash appeared they advised me to get in contact with my doctor to be tested to see if I had the antibodies for it, meaning I would have had it as a child, or if I was at risk of getting it.

Now fifths is virtually harmless to a child and to an adult, but can be very bad for an unborn fetus if the pregnant mother contracts the disease. So I called my doctor and they reassured me that more than likely I had it as a child and had nothing to worry about. But to be safe we would take blood and test at my next scheduled appointment, aka the one last week!

OK so it takes about a week to get the results back. My doctor gave me a call yesterday, I should have known since she called me and not my nurse Corina! She tells me that my "acute" levels were indeed high, meaning basically I tested positive for Fifths Disease. Of course I had done research online while waiting on the results so I knew what was next. She assured me that she felt everything would be OK. And that even though I tested positive there was a slight chance that MAYBE I was exposed as a child and just being exposed again around Justin and Nick my antibodies went crazy, but that because it was positive they have to treat me as if I have it!

So now we start the observation process on Miss Emily. I go in on the 16th of February for another level 2 ultrasound. We will be looking for fluid build-up on her heart, belly, or brain. I was upset with the news so my doctor did not go into alot of detail, just that we would do the scan and go from there. She stressed that she felt everything would be fine and that treating it aggressively and watching baby closely would allow her and me both to sleep easier at night, I guess you could say we are being extra safe than sorry! But from what I have read and found out basically Fetal infection is rare. However, when a fetus does become infected, the virus can disrupt its ability to produce red blood cells, sometimes leading to a dangerous form of anemia and pooling of fluids called "fetal hydrops". There is more but I rather not go into it because I know in my heart Miss Emily is going to be just fine.

When I first heard the news my heart sank and I think I hit a low with this pregnancy. As most of you know this pregnancy has been the hardest thing in my life I have ever gone through. Thankfully every obstacle we have faced to this point we have overcome and we are not about to stop now. Please if everyone could send up a thought or prayer for Emily and that she is OK and does not get this disease I would greatly appreciate it. There is a saying that is becoming true in my eyes that we are never given more than we can handle. Joe and I and the boys and Miss Emily are going to hit this hard. I am going to bake this little girl till she is full term and she is going to come out healthy as a horse and bossing her daddy and brothers around from day one!

P.S. And just to make everyone smile (because I know I need one) here is a picture of all three of my BOYS playing Rock Band 2 on Wii, it's tooooo funny to watch! And I promise to let everyone know how the ultrasound turns out in a couple weeks! HUGS - SUZY

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