Wednesday, June 9, 2010

General Update, Or In Which Nolan's Tonsillectomy Has Amazing Benefits

People have been asking if Nolan is three lately. This wouldn't normally be a striking question, since he will be three in a little over two months. Earlier this winter, however, we had been asked how many months remained until he turned two.

Nolan isn't really very short, but his "toddle" run and low weight made him look a tad younger than his true age. He was also tired much of the time, so we had to carry him a lot- adding to the age confusion.

Three months ago, we couldn't walk the length of the mall without Nolan crying and falling to the ground, too tired to go on. I actually had visions of carrying a five-year-old Nolan on my hip to the bus stop, because he literally couldn't walk more than 100 feet without collapsing in exhaustion.

Then he had his tonsillectomy and adenoidectomy this April. I expected a reduction in snoring and better breathing. We had hoped for better sleeping. We did not expect the sudden burst of energy and general health following the procedure. Nolan's post-tonsillectomy health improvements include:

Weight: While we were at the vet's office, I decided to throw the boy on the scale. It was accurate for our cat, so I'm pretty sure it was accurate for Nolan. The reading? Twenty eight pounds. Twenty eight pounds. Less than a year ago, he was nineteen pounds. This is some major weight gain, folks. If the vet's scale was accurate, he's now in the 20% range for weight. Much of this improvement was made with the Nexium, but the tonsillectomy seems to have added some benefit to his appetite. We have discontinued the DuoCal, and he is eating food without calorie supplementation.

Energy: Nolan has become, frankly, a bit of a terror with his energy level. Running laps around the house, running ahead of us in the mall, racing his brother in the driveway... doing what a typical two year old should do.

Height: Nolan's height was never much of a concern, but it had stalled out and dropped from the 80% to the 10% mark. He is growing again, and is now almost 36" tall. We're happy to see him climbing the charts and outgrowing his size 24 month shirts!

Happiness: While his screaming/crying episodes are not completely gone, they are greatly diminished. It is a rare morning that we have an hour of "inconsolable Nolan." His general happiness is improved.

Sturdiness: Perhaps because he is running more, his legs seem a bit more sturdy. He doesn't fall as often when he runs, and he seems less "loose" in his stride. This is probably a result of better muscle tone, since he is running around a lot more with his increased energy.

We are absolutely thrilled that Nolan is doing so amazingly well. You may have noticed that I didn't include "sleep" in the benefits- "sleep" seems to be a mixed bag. Since the tonsillectomy (2 months ago), Nolan has slept through the night six times. This is good, because it is approximately six times the number of nights he has slept through since birth. It is not, however, the improvement we had hoped for.

He also still snores, and has some noisy daytime breathing. We're not sure what to make of that, but the sleep study in August will give us more information on whether he is having any apnea. Judging by his increased energy levels, his quality of sleep must be improved (even if the quantity is not greatly improved). His nighttime wakings may also be a product of his severe reflux, so we're trying not to read too much into his nighttime capers.

If we had known a simple tonsillectomy/adenoidectomy would have had this much effect on Nolan's well-being, we would have been much less worried about having the surgery done. Here's to more energy and more growth from this point forward!


Julia said...

Great news! He does looks so much sturdier and more filled-out in the pictures. He's always been a cute kid, but now he's looking more robust. I'm so glad he's got more energy. He probably also just *feels* better all the time, since he's more fit and better nourished.

Auntie said...

This makes for joy in the grandparents house. This is good news indeed. Mom

Vivie said...

Great news!! And a spooky blog post as I was talking today abt the 'side' benefits of having done a simple CI operation.

He'll fill out in no time.Sucks abt the sleep thing , but it also can be a habit he can't kick.

Plus , earmold isn't helping very much either I think.

Yay for Nolan though! that was one BIG change!

Mandie said...

I noticed many of the same things in Carter after his procedure! He's been eating so much better, and sometimes I wonder if his tonsils were so big it was making eating uncomfortable. He's also hit a growth spurt, and his ATTITUDE is so much better! But ironically, we haven't noticed the improvement that we were hoping with his sleeping either! He still wakes up once a night 4-5 times a week. Not sure what that's all about, but I do think his QUALITY of sleep is so much better. Maybe the waking up thing is just a really hard habit to break. Especially when you've been doing it for three years, straight.

susannah said...

wonderful to hear all of these improvements! i can't wait to read the sleeping through the night every night post! (someday)

rouchi said...

I can almost sense a sense of happiness, relief and pride in ur post Leah.I am so so happy to read that he is hearing better, eating better, sleeping better, growing better,running more and more and more.Wow, i can imagine ur happiness as last year I too was having issues and they bring your own general morales down.Congrats and eeenjoooy this phase and many more "betters" to all of you!

xraevision said...

If only we could predict the future, just a little bit! I am so happy that Nolan is improving in so many areas due to his surgery. He and X are now exactly the same weight, still small but mighty!

As for the sleep issue, you may be able to get some extra insight from the OT here at JTC. We have some less serious sleep issues and they were very eager to discuss them.

We do not have microwaves in our apartments:-/ You may be able to request one on the first day, as JTC stores extra kitchen stuff in their basement (we now have a cutting board!), or you can use the TWO microwaves sitting forlornly in the 3rd lounge, which no one uses yet because the technician hasn't fixed the TV.

Herding Grasshoppers said...

Oh Leah, what great news!

Sounds like, even if he's still waking at night, maybe the sleep he is getting is better. More rested, more energy = growth and progress :D

Maybe the night-waking is an entrenched habit, as Mandie said?

But hurray for happier days!


Apraxia Mom said...

Sounds great! Sorry about the lack of sleep, though. Like you said, the follow up sleep study should address that issue.

Until then...Go, Nolan, Go!

Joey @ Big Teeth and Clouds said...

Terrific! I'm so happy for you - what a rewarding thing to have such an improvement!