Sunday, March 28, 2010
Baby Wang arrived in mid-January in critical condition. This little one was abandoned with ambiguous genitalia, but his most urgent problem was a history of constant vomiting and severe dehydration. The orphanage was located in a remote area without access to a high standard of medical care. They had the baby admitted to the hospital, but after several weeks they still had no diagnosis or treatment plan. Not knowing what else to do, the baby was discharged back to orphanage care. It became clear after several days that the orphanage was unable to deal with the severity of this baby's problems, so they asked if we might help.
We agreed to accept the baby and transferred to our main medical home at once. When little Wang arrived, he was already 6 weeks old, but was barely over 5 lbs. When we discussed this baby with our medical consultants, the baby's unusual symptoms (ambiguous genitalia and severe malnourishment and dehydration) rang a bell with one pediatrician. She suggested we see if this might be something called congenital adrenal hyperplasia.
Because the test for this condition is both expensive and difficult to obtain here, doctors recommended that we assume this was the problem and treat as such. Baby Wang began drug treatment for the adrenal hyperplasia and has been under the watchful eye of an expert dietician who is working to combat many weeks of malnourishment.
We are delighted to say little Wang has responded wonderfully, which confirms the doctor's suspicions of the original diagnosis. At this point it is still unsure if Wang is actually a boy or a girl, but chromosome testing later will answer this question. For now, we are just so glad that Wang is on the road to a normal and healthy life. See how much he has changed!
Thursday, March 18, 2010
Sunday, March 7, 2010
We just started correcting the feet of little Min, who arrived last week. We'll apply a series of casts to gradually stretch the feet into the correct position. He'll need a very minor (out patient) surgery to nip the Achilles tendon when we are almost done, and then once he heals from that he'll get a special pair of corrective shoes that are attached to a brace that will help hold the position as he grows. Once he's 3 or 4 years old he won't even need that any more (till that time he'll need to wear his brace while sleeping) and then he'll be just like all the other kids!
So this little fellow got his first set of casts on Thursday. Here are his little feet before we started. His got the maximum score for the club foot deformity, so this is not a mild case:
He didn't seem to mind the casting at all (in fact, he only cried when we had to change his diaper in the middle of the process) and actually fell asleep as we were finishing. That is the beauty of the Ponseti method of club foot correction - it's non invasive, does not involve painful surgery or upset the baby's routines at all. And it works! We have been using the Ponseti method on all of our club foot babies for 6 years now and have seen some amazing transformations. Here is Min just as we were finishing, waiting for his plaster casts to dry:
Doesn't he look peaceful? We'll post more updates as we change his casts so you can see the progress too.
Monday, March 1, 2010
As always, we are grateful for your prayers and support!