|Doctors are detectives too.|
It was a mystery that would confound even the most seasoned detective. Why was this happening? What is causing it? How can we solve this problem? I guess doctors are really just detectives in starched white doctor coats. They gather all the facts (symptoms) and determine (diagnose) the cause of it. Basically, Christopher had his own private detective in his GI doctor. She left no stone unturned. She investigated all the possibilities.
She began with the most obvious causes and worked her way out from there. Think of it this way. What if your car doesn't start? You don't immediately put in a new engine. You check to make sure the car has gas first.
Likewise, the doctor considered the most obvious causes first. Maybe it's just that Christopher is fussy. Maybe he just has the worst mother ever who doesn't know how to feed her own baby. Maybe he can't tolerate the formula, or maybe he hates the taste of it. All of these possibilities were proven wrong.
Next she checked out physical causes such as a blockage or malformation. Neither of these turned out to be the problem. The doctor did determine that severe reflux could be a part of the problem, but did it really explain all the symptoms?
Maybe there was a neurological cause. This would mean that his brain was not communicating properly with his digestive track, but the tests she performed did not show this to be the root of the problem.
Is it possible that this could be symptomatic of another disease process? There definitely was some similarity between Christopher's symptoms and those caused by Cystic Fibrosis. I saw this myself "on display" in a couple of his hospital roommates. Both of them exhibited all the same digestive issues as Christopher, and they both had been diagnosed with Cystic Fibrosis. If it looks like a duck, quacks likes a duck, then maybe it's a duck.
The doctor ordered a sweat test. This required Christopher to run up and down the halls of the hospital until he worked up a good sweat. Then they took a sample of his sweat and tested it to see if it held the markers for Cystic Fibrosis. Okay, I'm just kidding. They didn't make him run because he forgot his running shoes. Sorry, I'm tired and it's late. Besides, laughter is the best medicine. I'm done now, so I will be serious. They really did need him to sweat in order to test him for Cystic Fibrosis, but he didn't really have to "work up" a sweat to make it happen.
It was actually kind of an interesting test. I was expecting some kind of blood test or something, but instead they wrapped what looked like plastic wrap around his upper arm and then heated it with this machine until it caused him to sweat. I guess it's better than requiring the patient to do aerobics or something, but it's not near as entertaining.
Please don't take this the wrong way. I'm not making fun of my child or making light of the situation. I was well aware that the situation was serious, dead serious. It's just that I found out from the very beginning that if you don't laugh, you'll cry. It's a coping mechanism that I came to depend on to get me through difficult situations. I tried crying. It didn't change anything, and it just made me feel worse and out of control. Laughing didn't change anything either, but it sure felt better.
Fortunately, the results of the sweat test were negative for Cystic Fibrosis, but apparently the doctors thought he shared a lot of the same symptoms as his roommates too because they repeated the sweat test several times. Each time the results were negative.
The detective work was far from over. There would be plenty of more theories tested. Sadly, it would take months to figure out what was really ailing Christopher. It would require our doctor to stretch her medical mind to the limit.
|Doctors do amazing detective work!|
If you have never accepted Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior, you can pray like this: