Tuesday, March 27, 2012


I've been working on a post about Aurelia's MRI results.  Unfortunately, when I finally got around to hitting "Publish" I was greeting with an "error" message.  And poof, all my work and effort was gone.  That's frustrating.  But I didnt really like the post anyways.  I had worked so hard to craft this little synopsis of a very important test in a fun, conversational way.  But sometimes life is just easier laid out nice and plain.  It's hard to be conversational about brain structures.  So, instead I'll just summarize the (mostly good) results.

The Good

- First and greatest, Aurelia HAS a corpus callosum! and a partial septum pellucidum.  This is the part of the brain that connects the right and left.  In her first MRI it was not visible at all.  It's hard to get into all the medical jargon, so we'll just say that this is a great piece of news.

- Her pituitary gland and optic nerve were "unremarkable."  Again, on her first MRI there were pages of notes on these two parts of her brain.  They looked damaged and not complete.  Now, her pituitary gland and optic nerve don't even warrant remark.

- She has loads of fluffy, healthy looking brain tissue.  I remember so vividly being in her last ultrasound and looking at this picture of her brain filled with fluid.  Her perinatologist took a pointer and outlined this barely visible grey line around the perimeter of her brain.  "That's her brain tissue, and it's under a lot of pressure."  Of course, we knew at this point that the brain is like a sponge in that when pressure is released, it will regain some of it's original form.  We didn't know how much tissue would fluff out.  And we're pleased to see that it was a lot!

The Questionable

- These results are preliminary.  Some really smart doctor will go over her MRI slide by slide for more thorough findings.  Although we're not expecting bad news at all, knowing there is more info coming can be a little daunting.  If nothing else, it makes us very impatient to wait.

- She does have some fluid pockets and some ventricle dilation.  It doesn't appear to be putting much pressure on her brain, but it does mean that there is brain tissue that has not fluffed out.

- The back of her brain shows signs of damage with some white and smooth tissue, and incomplete mylanation.  This wasn't huge news for us since we knew that't where her brain bleed was located, and that is the area of her brain that is not receiving as much blood.  It also goes hand in hand with many of her diagnoses (CVI, delayed motor development, etc.).  We also don't know what that means long term.  But we'll hopefully find out more at her neurology follow up.

How we're dealing with this news

We are so thrilled with her MRI results.  Even with the damaged areas and fluid pockets, knowing that much of her brain is unremarkable is a huge relief.  None of this information changes much about her longterm prognosis, her care, or her diagnoses.  But we're happy that there wasn't much to report.  And if there are anymore findings in the full report, I'll fill you all in.


Mary Pandiani said...

Isn't she the cutest? We love you Aurelia!!!!

Diane Forsyth said...

Oh my goodness she is so cute. I think Bill is cute too and I see alot of Bill right here!! Love and hugs to Aurelia and her wonderful parents!!!!!

Unknown said...

Unremarkable! Thanks for making it a plain and simple summary for those of us who aren't familiar with the more technical jargon...although it is fairly frustrating to create an entire post and have it disappear. Why does that happen with blogs so often? It has happened to me 4 times and I just have such a hard time re-writing in that fun and conversational way.

Unknown said...

this "unknown" is still Shandra by the way...

Anonymous said...

My precious Little Dew Drop!

Deidre said...

I swear your daughter gets cuter with every picture you post!! And she started out so cute too. Glad to hear that her brain was unremarkable!