We had both been dreading this day. Alice had been referred for further diagnostic tests to ascertain whether her intial ABRs were accurate and to look at the physiology of her ears (in part to give us a head start if we went down the CI route but also to ascertain whether there was a true neuropathy or an inner hair cell dyssynchrony). This would have to be performed under general anaesthesia.
We sat in the waiting room at St. George’s watching the other children coming out of recovery and being wheeled into the observation room within the paediatric scanning centre. Not a nice thing to watch – Note to St. George’s – this is not a clever arrangement if you are trying to keep down a parent’s anxiety.
For a change, things were running pretty much to schedule, although Alice’s rather unpleasant cough did give the Anaesthetists a headache as to whether Alice would cope or not.
In the end, they decided to go for it.
Bless little Alice, she fell asleep on her mummy while we were waiting and was not particularly pleased when we woke her up. Having a mask put over her face was not on her list of things she wanted to do at that moment in time. Neither, I have to add, was it something I would ever want to do again, although I suspect it will be the first of many.
Alice screamed and kicked in her mummy’s arms as they put her to sleep, but after around 30 seconds, she was calm and sleeping.
Of we trotted to the cafeteria for cake and tea. They told us we should come back in an hour.
As it transpired, Alice was asleep for 2 hours – rather longer than they and we had hoped. When we saw her in recovery she was in some distress (Mrs. Mouse, her favourite cuddly toy wasn’t with her) and she was as groggy and disoriented as hell.
Mummy gave her a big hug and her first drink of the day. There was some concern over her circulation as her hands appeared a little blue, but over the next 2 hours she perked back up and, thank God, we were on our way home with Alice stuffing her face with sandwiches all the way.
What a brave girl.
Test results to come within the week.