Wow. I finally feel like I can update on Beckham boy. I finally feel like I have some answers. I finally feel better about the whole situation. About 3 weeks ago we took Beckham to a naturopath and a new pediatrician. They both had suspicions that Beckham wasn't absorbing or metabolizing nutrients right, and was bordering on malnourished. That made me so sad! I have been nursing Beckham his whole life (all 10+ months of it!), which is supposed to be the best nutrition he can get, and hearing this made me feel bad. It's probable that the main reason is that he was born too early. The naturopathist had us change his diet quite a bit, and also added some digestive enzymes for him to take. I even bought all of the food and made it myself; that was so rewarding and felt like such an accomplishment. Within a week I noticed a huge difference in Beckham's strength and balance. He was sitting without tipping, and could catch himself if he did start to fall. He started putting more weight on his legs, for longer periods of time. He seemed to have so much more energy.
The pediatrician had us redo all of the blood tests and get an abdominal ultrasound. I was kind of scared for that since we'd been bracing ourselves for a liver problem. We got the results that day--totally normal! I was so excited. We also had an appointment scheduled up in Grand Junction to see a pediatric neurologist at the end of the month.
While we were in Utah, miraculously we got in to see a pediatric neurologist at Primary's in Salt Lake City. Traci has this crazy network and always knows someone who knows someone. I have no idea how it worked out, but somehow we managed to get everything faxed up in time for the specialist to have Beckham's records when we got there. It saved us a lot of time and money being able to go to the doctor in SLC.
When we walked into Primary Children's my eyes immediately teared up. There was a precious little girl in a pink robe, a hat, and a little mask on her face getting out of a wheelchair to go into the gift store. I saw moms and dads carrying sick kids through the hallway. My heart felt so sad for these poor little ones. I thought about how just the day before we had been at a water park where kids laughed and splashed, and here these little babies lived in the hospital. It broke my heart and I empathized with their family members, and felt so grateful for my own children's health.
I was so impressed with the neurologist. He was personable, kind, and listened intently to everything I said. He came to the appointment with a giant folder full of Beck's records and it was clear he had already studied them and was up to speed on our situation. He did an exam and we were all so happy to hear that Beckham's reflexes are great and although his muscle tone isn't good, he still has good strength. Beckham was a little ham throughout the appointment talking and smiling. We took a developmental test and he measured at or above his age for cognitive ability, fine motor skills, socializing, etc. He tested at about a 6 month old for his gross motor skills, which was actually better than I expected.
Dr. Bale spent over an hour with us. He answered every question and explained everything clearly. He ordered more blood work (poor baby!) and included a few new tests we hadn't done yet. He was so thorough and at the end of the appointment said, "I feel so confident after seeing you. I don't want you to worry about this little guy. Call anytime if you need anything or have any questions." He told us that Beckham most likely has "congenital hypotonia" which basically means he has low muscle tone and will be slower in his physical development, but by age 2 or 3 he will be completely caught up. This news was such a relief.
Today I got a call from Dr. Bale himself, confirming that all of the blood tests run were completely normal, including the one that had been off the charts abnormal. The pediatrician we saw also had the same results. They both concluded that he had a virus that affected his liver when the original tests were run. He had been sick but we didn't correlate the two things. All of these answers have given us such peace of mind.
We've been continuing the diet and are still noticing huge improvements. We are going to get Beckham going in some physical therapy to help strengthen him. I'm going to enjoy the extra time I have of him being a baby, before he is running around like a crazy man. I am so thankful that everything is okay and that he will thrive.