On Tuesday afternoon, Riley and i ventured up to the William Harvey Hospital for his 12 month review with the Neonatal Consultant, Dr Long. We had been there previously so knew the drill and upon arrival at the Padua Outpatients Ward, we were sat in the waiting room before being called through to the medical reception area for Riley to be weighed, measured and have his head circumference taken.
The consultant then came out and took us through to the consultation room. He had a look through Riley's notes, examined his chest and back, checked his hip and arm movements, asked about bowel movements, speech, mobilty etc and we discussed any concerns i had over Riley's health or development.
He then took a peek inside Riley's nappy (brave man) to examine his 'dinkie'. Riley was born with Hypospadias which is a male birth defect in which the opening of the tube that carries urine from the body develops abnormally, usually on the underside of the 'dinkie'.Riley's has always been considered minor but it was hoped that it would correct itself as he grew but this doesn't appear to be the case so much to mummy's dismay, surgery may be the only option.
So, what were the outcomes of our appointment:
*Riley's above average in length for his adjusted age (10 months) and is predicted to be a tall, lean man some day.
*Riley was born with a hole in the heart and an irregular heartbeat, this has now corrected itself and no problems were detected at this appointment.
*Riley's a happy, content and laidback boy who despite being underweight is growing normally and healthily.
*Mummy was told she's doing an amazing job (which is ALWAYS nice to hear).
The Not So Good
* Riley is underweight for his adjusted age (10 months) and this will need to be closely monitored for the next 3 months. If no improvement, a referall will be made to a dietitian/nutritionist.
*Riley is behind developmentally with his mobility and at 12 months (10 months adjusted) is still unable to sit unaided or crawl so a referall has now been made for physiotherapy. I'm told this is not uncommon with babies born before 32 weeks gestation and the physio sessions and exercises are thought to help considerably with mobility issues so i'm hoping they'll make all the difference.
* Riley's hypospadias has not improved so a referall has now been made for surgery. If needed, the operation will be carried out before he is two.
If i'm honest, i left the appointment feeling a little deflated like somehow i wasn't doing enough for him, but in hindsight i know this obviously isn't the case.
He's come a remarkable way in the last 12 months and beat the odds to still be here so i'm incredibly proud and thankful for that but this appointment was a friendly reminder of the journey and obstacles we still have to overcome. We WILL get there though.