The Clinic

My little dude has a genetic condition called Velo Cardio Facial Syndrome which I first mentioned here.

Part of this deal is a sub-mucal cleft palate which is a fancy way of saying his speech is a bit hard to understand, notwithstanding almost three years of speech therapy (and the fact that he's 5 and says crazy arsed stuff anyway).

So yesterday Henry and I spent five hours here:


He saw an audiologist, a specialist speech pathologist, a Ear Nose Throat Surgeon and a Plastic Surgeon who specialises in small people's palate reconstruction.

I saw a coffeeologist which was probably my highlight.


Henry, still obsessed with Disney Pixar Cars, got two new cars to see him through:



He had to have a videofluoroscopy which is this cool real-time xray looking at palate movement and the structure of the mouth. In order to see the pharyngeal walls clearly, they had to inject something called Barium up Henry's nose (about the consistency of thin toothpaste) which he was remarkably tolerant about. 

After seeing the Plastics guy, we had a recommendation of reconstructive surgery to repair the cleft and to simultaneously create a pharyngeal flap at the back of his throat.

It's pretty major surgery, he'll be in hospital for 4 to 5 days and post-op can be pretty painful and miserable. Might take a few more cars to get us through this one. 

Luckily for Henry I have, as you know if you're a regular here, a TERRIFIC custard recipe, and well-tried smoothie recipes and it might be about time to knock up some icecream!

We haven't scheduled anything, there are lots of pros and cons to consider, there are a number of risks with the reconstruction, so we'll go back and talk to the speech guy again before we give the go-ahead.

Henry was so fab all afternoon, quite cheerful, introducing his cars to everyone we met. By the end of the last appointment (the Plastic Surgeon) he quietly found my camera and took some photos for his own amusement:





Teach him to hold the camera steady and the kid could be good!


4 Comments on “The Clinic

September 25, 2009 at 1:41 pm

hmmmmm… cars. sounds like a movie i could get.
if i push this button here…. and click that button there…. annnnnnddddddd, presto! 😉

good luck with whatever you decide to go ahead with.


Alex N
September 25, 2009 at 6:43 pm

Oh, Henry you are a star! On so many levels! xxx

September 26, 2009 at 12:32 pm

I had to do a barium swallow once – it was fairly horrendous. I can’t imagine having it up my nose! What a great boy to not complain. 🙂
He’s def a budding photographer!

Alex N
September 26, 2009 at 11:02 pm

wow what a great guy is the young Henry thinking of you as you make up your minds lots of love from Tante Hilaire xxx


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