Thursday, January 13, 2011

Finally another update!

Anna had an appointment with the ophthalmologist two days before Christmas. We had so many activities and family get-togethers, etc. since then that only now am I taking some time to give any loyal readers an update. So sorry!

The news was good! Not outstanding, but good nonetheless. The doctor found that Anna had barely a trace of inflammation in each eye. He was happy about that, so I think we can be happy, as well. I would love to hear "all clear" for many months so that we could begin (just maybe) to think of lowering medication doses instead of always being aware of what new and powerful medications are "in the pipeline" and "on the table" should we need to consider other options (there aren't many left at the moment).

A friend asked (in the comments on a previous post) why a trace of inflammation worries me. I had to think about that. I'm not sure that I'm all that worried about it anymore. Anna has had a trace of inflammation for years now, so I've become accustomed to hearing that verdict, and her life has been relatively fine with a trace of inflammation. If I have an underlying worry, maybe it's the thought that the longer we go without a verdict of "all clear," the longer we wait for just a glimpse of hope that we may someday start to lower the doses of medication. This is just an inner struggle of mine, because down deep inside, I know that I need to take each day as it comes and not worry about "tomorrow" (since today has enough worries of its own), knowing that our lives are in the hands of the Lord Jesus.

The ophthalmologist was pleased enough that we could decrease the eye drops to the left eye from twice a day to once a day. I think another reason he made that decision was that the pressure in Anna's left eye was higher than the right eye---still within normal range, but we don't want it to get any higher, and the Pred Forte drops have a history of increasing the pressure. We go back in early February for another check on the eyes, and to the pediatric rheumatologist in February, as well.

Other than these doctors appointments and the weekly oral Methotrexate (and accompanying Leucovorin), daily eye drops, and a Humira injection every ten days, life for Anna is basically that of a normal, active 13-year-old. She's active in youth group and sings with the chorus and special ensemble at school. She played the bassoon in the holiday concert at school, as well. Anna has a little job (running a vacuum for an older friend every two weeks), and she now has a role in the high school musical (playing an animal in "Children of Eden") in early March.


Amy Cunningham said...

I personally can understand why it would worry you. Although a trace isn't SERIOUS, when you go for a long period of time as you have with hearing that, it means it isn't going away. If it doesn't go away that means neither can the meds. There is no sign of an end in sight. So, I understand, but I'm glad that it seems you have made peace with it :)

Jacob's Mom said...

Glad to hear she is doing well!