Friday, June 24, 2011

Penny Lane! Can you hear me?

A couple months ago at Penny Lane's 15 month appt, I brought up with the our Doctor that I was concerned because she was not speaking yet. Remember THIS post? He didn't seem all that worried, but because of my concerns he suggested we get her hearing checked. Depending on how that went, they would determine if we need to see anyone else about it. So we scheduled an audiology appt for sweet Penny and prayed that it would go well...

Penny and I went to the audiologist a week later to check out those little ears of hers. We sat down in the sound booth and the testing began. They played little noises at different volumes to the right and to the left of us. I had done this before with Lucy and she had no trouble at all. Penny WAS responding to the noises but they had to repeat several of them to get her to respond. After the hearing portion of the test they tested her ears for negative pressure. This test puts a small amount of pressure in her ears and sees how her eardrum reacts to it. In a normal ear there is an average of 75% eardrum movement. Penny Lane had 1% eardrum movement. ONE PERCENT. The audiologist could not really give me any reasons why her eardrum was not moving at all, but she did say that that very well could be the reason she was not talking...

BECAUSE SHE HEARS LIKE SHE'S UNDER WATER.

It was obvious that we need to see a specialist at this point, to find out why this was happening. So we scheduled an appt. In the meantime, I spoke with my pediatrician who suggested we all start learning sign language. I never really got sad or upset about any of this. It is what it is... If we all have to learn sign language to communicate with Penny Lane, then thats what we will do. She is the most precious baby, whether she can hear or not.

Fast forward a couple of weeks and we met with the specialist. We had to have a second hearing test before we saw him... and poor girl's hearing was worse this time :( The specialist examined Penny Lane's ears and said that she might as well be under water. He explained that due to a structural problem, Penny's ears are full of fluid and that her eardrums are basically sitting right on top of her adenoids. This is the cause of her eardrums not moving and the fluid build up in her ears. I felt SO bad that we did not catch this earlier. But she has not had ear infections, so there was really no reason to have check this before.

The doctor said that she needed surgery. She needs tubes and her adenoids removed. Tubes to drain the fluid and the adenoids removed to allow her eardrum to move so she can hear better. He believes that after the surgeries she will regain most of her hearing if not all of it!!! YAY!

She goes back to the specialist in about 5 weeks to get rechecked and to schedule her surgery. Why not just schedule the surgery right then, you ask? Girlfriend needs to gain some weight :) He wants to she her put on a few pounds before surgery... I wish I had that problem!

So, here we are, learning sign language and doing the best we can right now :) Good news is that Lucy still understands Penny's little language and can translate really well for her! They are so funny :)

13 comments:

Katie @ Loves of Life said...

I'm so thrilled the surgery will fix it! Kudos to you momma for taking all the necessary steps to get her little ears working right in the next few weeks ;) Here's to gaining weight!! xo

Ashley said...

Aww sweet Lucy the translator! I love their relationship. How wonderful that Penny's hearing can be fixed! That is amazing and wonderful news!

In this wonderful life... said...

SO glad to hear they think surgery will fix things!!!! Major blessing! I'll continue to pray for her healing and hearing :) PS - she can eat my carbs and sugars for me : /

melissa said...

hey there...

wanted to let you know... the.exact.same.thing. happened to me with my Paxton. He was a little slow with gross motor and always really advance with fine motor... so everyone kept saying he was a preemie so he'll catch up with both talking and walking.The walking came but the talking did not. When he wasn't talking at ALL at 17 months I was worried. He had just started to act up a little at daycare and then the hubbs went out of town. He was frustrated and so when I attempted to correct him ... er, loudly shall we say.... and he didn't even turn around, I realized he only ever responded when he was in front of me face to face. He failed two hearing tests with specialists and had the EXACT same diagnosis.He was hearing like he was underwater and had only had 1 mild ear infection right after we started daycare. He had surgery the following week at just 21 pounds and had tubes in and adnoids out. He was talking in a week and a half... (though not clearly)...no joke! We qualified for speech to help him catch up and now he is 24 months and talking in complete 3 and 4 word sentences. It was amazing! now we wear ear plugs to swim, but I am so thankful I didn't just wait and see like everyone said!

Good luck! You'll be amazed at the difference.

Sylvia Rose Design said...

Good luck with everything!!! Hoping the surgery will correct the problem! Growing up with a 100% hearing impaired mother, i totally understand the concern. People always ask me if I know sign language, and alas, I don't, as my mother wasn't born hearing impaired. I don't have much insight into this other than I KNOW there are so many amazing options out there for any hearing impairment - praying for a successful surgery!

Allena said...

We watch 'Baby Signing Time' and 'Signing Time' with Trent, might not help Penny a lot since it is singing, but there are pictures that correspond with everything. They are cute and catchy and Trent STILL likes to watch them and he can fully talk and he still uses several signs. It's so cute! So happy for a solution! Praying for weight gain and a safe and effective surgery!!

The Arizona Russums said...

Hope it all goes well. Praying for y'all!

Carrie said...

I'm glad everything is working out. The positive energy is great. Penny (and Lucy) are lucky :)

Livvy's Mommy said...

So glad to hear they can fix it! I have a question, when you say she isn't speaking...meaning you can't understand her? Does she say anything you can understand? I am asking this because my Olivia is 19 (almost 20 CRY!!) months and she doesn't say a whole lot...that we can understand. I mean the girl talks non stop (see my blog post video where she jabbers) but we can't understand a thing she says most of them time. I have asked her Dr. and she didn't seem concerned but I wonder if she isn't hearing us either!

Perfectly Imperfect said...

I'm so glad that you're getting some answers!! I actually had this same problem when I was younger. I had tubes put in multiple times when I was younger to help with the issue. They waited until I was much older to take my adenoids out which ended up not being the best thing. I have only about half hearing in my left ear where if they'd done it all at one, it could've possible been better. All that to say, I'm doing just fine :) and so will sweet Penny Lane!

Sweet Simplicity said...

Oh little Penny! I hope she can put on a few pounds before the surgery.

Tara said...

i'm so glad that surgery can fix the problem! both my kiddos have had ear issues ~ mainly from ear infections though. masyn has had 2 sets of tubes and her adenoids out ... praying that's the last surgery for her. but at her one-year checkup she couldn't hear at all, her ear drums were totally filled with fluid and she heard sounds as if she were under water, too. i was soooo happy when we went back after her surgery and she responded to all the sounds! i could have cried! there are so many worse things than not being able to hear ... but as a mom you just want your babies to be able to hear all the sweet sounds that God made. so. i'm so happy to hear that a simple surgery can fix penny lane's sweet ears!

fifth floor up said...

Penny Lane, I love you and your family! Maybe you should make some more brookies (sp?) for her to eat. They were so good! That will help her gain some weight! Love you Jess!