Friday, October 7, 2011

Developmental Check Up - Brody & Kylee - Advice? Anyone?

First, I apologize for being distant the past week or two. Between doctors appointments, busy toddlers and 5am workouts I'm exhausted to say the least! I've deprived the poor things from play dates and all the regular outings we usually go on. Our near future surely consists of pumpkin patches, walks around the neighborhood and the zoo....gosh that zoo has been calling my name! One thing that business cannot get in the way of is our beloved doctor's appointments! This week Brody and Kylee had a check up with their developmental pediatrician. Unlike our "regular" pediatrician, our developmental ped evaluates them thoroughly and addresses developmental issues due to their prematurity.

Both Brody and Kylee did well, as always, and impressed Dr. Roberts with the remarkable progress they've made since their discharge from NICU. There were times we would have been THRILLED to know they would EVER reach the point where they are now...walking, talking, learning...thriving. They are both still a tad bit behind in some areas according to their adjusted age (28months) but are making progress we are all happy with! Brody's motor skills at this point are those of an 18-24 month old. Cognitive level was 27months, Receptive Language 30months, Expressive Language 30months and Fine Motor 27months. He weighed in at a whoppin 28lbs 4oz (25%) and is 36inches tall (50% - and to think a neuro said he would always be on the short side ;).

Kylee like Brody scored at 18-24months for Gross Motor, 28-29months Cognitive, Receptive & Expressive Language she's ahead of the game (no surprise there for those of you who know her) at 34months and Fine Motor she was also right at 28-29months. Our big girl weighed in at 27lbs (23-50%) and is 37inches tall (50%). Her head is still pretty low on the charts sitting in the 3rd percentile but Dr. Roberts isn't too worried and will just keep a close eye on her development. We've been faced with another therapy option for Kylee and I gotta tell you I'm stumped :( For those of you who remember our "on the fence" feelings about Brody getting a cranial helmet we're now feeling a little iffy on the new therapy the docs have mentioned to us on several occasions.

For those of you who don't know, Kylee suffered a bilateral brain bleed, grades 1 and 4, the 4 being on the right side of her brain. This brain injury has affected the left side of her body, her hand in particular, and has resulted in hemiparesis (a type of Cerebral Palsy). The therapists and doctors have asked us to consider Constraint Induced Therapy. The therapy would consist of constraining her right arm to where she is not able to use it, at all, for a long period of time (weeks) in hopes to strengthen and encourage use of her left hand. I've heard of this kind of therapy before and about how effective it is, however, most of what I hear is how well it did for adults after brain injuries such as stroke. The difference between an adult and a child, an adult can understand the point to the therapy, a two year old, not so much. I personally don't know of anyone who has been through Constraint Induced Therapy with a toddler. Obviously it would frustrate the crap out of her, not being able to use her one and only "good" arm/hand. I'm just having a hard time thinking about weather or not the frustration will outweigh the benefit. Who knows, maybe it won't be as bad as I'm imagining?? On the other hand I am fully aware that the sooner and more aggressive we tackle the problem the better the outcome we'll have as her brain is still "plastic" as the docs have always said. So I know it's a long shot but if any of you readers have been through this, please give us your advice on the matter. We'll be doing research of course, but to hear from someone whose been through it would be great. Thanks!


  1. Check this website, and the blog link. I know these people and they have had to do something like that.

  2. I have heard of this type of therapy, though personally I have never been through it. I have heard it to be very successful but for a child I would think rather than "restrain" I would consider casting the good arm therefor being a little less forceful. Has Kylee ever had a cast? It could help without traumatizing. Just a suggestion. Good luck.

  3. I was forced as a toddler to wear a patch over my good eye in hopes that it would force my bad eye to take over.

    The only outcome that resulted was that my good eye became weaker due to loss of use. Doctors now days do NOT routinely suggest this type of therapy anymore for eye therapy.

    I would ask your doctors about the possibility of a similar result in your daughter's therapy.

  4. Hi I am a nanny in New Jersey and several years ago I took care of a set of triplets ( one of who had cp) He had the same problem only it affected his right side. He did a camp when he was 2 for eight hours a day where they put his good arm in a removable cast so he was forced to use his affected arm and hand. He did surpriseingly well. I stayed and volunteered so that I could be him and make sure he was okay. It was a great experience for he and I both. I learned alot and he had a ton of fun. The key was to mix it up . They would have and project that was easy for him and then one that was harder and then another easier one so he didn't get frustrated. If u want to contact me u can my e-mail address is good luck. It is not easy to decide what is best.


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