>> Thursday, May 21, 2009
First, we were completely surprised today to get a wonderful gift from Ashley (Maxton's Mom). Ashley, you are so creative and to think about us with this gift was incredible. Thank you so much for this special gift and for also thinking about Hollie! Here is a picture:
It's been a long day, but overall we feel a good day. We didn't learn anything surprising and we are just fine with that. We hit the road about 9:00 and had barely made it out of the neighborhood when we got the call about the MRI machine not working. We don't have a lot of luck with these machines since the one in Houston went down when we were scheduled also. We got called back about 11:30 and the actual test took about an hour. Stef was so uncomfortable throughout the entire experience, but she stayed strong and made it through the procedure.
Dr. Twickler met with us a shortly after to discuss what she found. I have to say she is the nicest lady and just incredibly thorough. She really is an authority on fetal imaging and I feel lucky that we are close enough to have been able to get her opinion. She was just terrific to work with. She was able to get fantastic, noise free images that I believe were much easier to read than what we had in Houston. The first item up for discussion was the liver position. Our gut was right, it is "up" (in the chest - not where it is supposed to be). The good thing is there is only 2.8% of the liver up and she really had to search for it. It's barely remarkable and much lower than 20% which is one of the predictors for ECMO and mortality (less than 20% is good). Finally have that mystery solved!
Another measurement of conflicting importance is Total Fetal Lung Volume and then the Observed to Expected Total Fetal Lung Volume %. Our situation with twins presents a somewhat unique situation because we are able to see what Kamryn's lungs measure and then compare them directly with where they should be by measuring Brooke's. The total volume of both Kamryn's lungs is 20cc's while Brooke's total lung volume is 81cc's. Brooke is a week ahead of Kamryn, so if you back that up a week, Kamryn should have 80cc's if all where normal. Basically, Kamryn has 25% of the lung volume that Brooke has. That's not so good since some of the studies have suggested lower survival rates with that low of a %.
At the same time, Dr. Twickler measured Kamryn's LHR (lung to head ratio) and the result was 3.3 which is extremely close to what Dr. Zaretsky has found between 3.0 - 3.4. Anything higher than 1.4 is considered good. We are in fantastic shape with LHR.
*** I go into detail about how these are calculated in my document in the upper left hand corner of the blog so I will spare everyone the details.
Total Fetal Lung Volume measures the volume or space of the lungs while LHR measures the area in just a single plane. They are measuring the lungs in two totally different ways and we are basically getting conflicting results. Dr. Twickler didn't put nearly as much weight on the measurements as she did on the liver position and we are in good shape there.
The bottom line is none of this tells us how much hypertension will be present in her lungs and ultimately how this will all play out. Stef asked afterwards what my gut was telling me and I do believe Kamryn situation is going to be a challenge to get through with many ups and downs, but I believe we have a "good" scenario and she is going to survive. Kamryn has one heck of a fight ahead of her, but she can win this. Here is one of the images of Kamryn.
Overall, today was a good day and I know Stef and I are both ready. As ready as we will ever be I suppose. Thanks for all the continued support - we honestly can't thank you all enough!
p.s. - Scott, I do NOT watch American Idol like your comment suggests :)