Stop this episode of House M.D. — we want to get off. Thankfully, Jennifer’s experience hasn’t been exactly like a House episode — if it had, she already would have had three brain operations and five experimental tests. But the doctors are pretty mystified at this point about whatever is happening with Jen.
Yesterday, another doctor got involved. He’s a neurosurgeon who specializes in blood vessel issues in the head. So it was a bit disconcerting for Jen to hear him say that he didn’t believe what he had been told about her head scans until he saw them.
As a result of ongoing discussions among the various experts involved (for those keeping score, we’re up to an OB, a high-risk OB, a neurologist, a vascular surgeon, a rheumatologist, and a neurosurgeon), it looks like the consensus is shifting away from an autoimmune disorder as being the underlying cause of the issues with the arteries in her head. It’s also looking less likely that the arteries are temporarily blocked due to spasming.
The latest theory (and it’s just a theory at this point), is that some sort of genetic abnormality caused chronic blockage in the arteries. They’ve begun testing for various things, but a lot of the tests they want to do probably won’t happen until after the baby is born.
[I neglected to mention yesterday that the baby is doing great. They’ve been monitoring her quite a bit, and she looks perfectly healthy.]
We’re awaiting word on what the change in consensus is going to mean for treating Jen’s migraine symptoms. The goal is to get the pain under control with drugs she can take at home so she can be released from the hospital at some point. But the current steroid treatment is a bit up in the air because it originally was intended to address both an autoimmune reaction (which they think is unlikely) and the migraine symptoms.
In keeping with the plan to eventually get Jen home, the doctors shifted from IV pain medication to pills. At least combined with the steroids, the pills are working to keep her pain down fairly well, though not as well as the IV drugs were working.
Last night, Jennifer got to visit with all four kids (in two separate visits to lessen the chaos). She really misses being with them. Then we both had the best night of sleep we’ve had since arriving at the hospital. We’ll see what today brings . . .