Monday, June 8, 2009

Bottle blues

When we met with Gavin's Speech Pathologist (Heather) a couple weeks ago, she said that we would need to get authorization from our insurance before continuing the bottle-feeding clinics with her. My insurance requires a pre-authorization for speech therapy, so we have been waiting for Heather to call us back to let us know if the pre-authorization was approved by our insurance. Well, on Friday, she called to let me know that Gavin's pediatrician had to approve the pre-authorization and, after reading the report about our desire to work on bottle-feeding, he denied it. So we would not be able to meet with her to work on the bottle. I was so distressed about it since Gavin struggles so much with bottle-feeding and we need him to take a bottle when I return to work. I even ordered some bottles that seem absolutely amazing because they look and feel more like a mother's breast than any other nipples I have found. They even require the same suction and compression actions used with breast-feeding. So I was hopeful that they might be the best for Gav. So I made an appointment with Gavin's pediatrician today to explain the reason for trying the bottle and to try to convince him to approve the authorization.

I think I may have mentioned before that his pediatrician is really against bottle-feeding. So, after explaining our reasons to him, he basically said that if Gavin gets hungry enough while I am away, he will eat. Hmmm.... I don't think I really like that answer. I also expressed my concerns over Gavin's circumcision, since I had noticed that it seemed red and pulled apart in one spot. He said that it had adhered together in some spots and would eventually put apart on it's own. This worried me as well since I have heard horror stories about circumcision's fusing back together and requiring surgery. When Dr. Shafai showed me where it had already pulled apart on it's own, Gavin started screaming, so I grabbed him quickly to comfort him. We were also told that he has a herniated belly-button, but that it would go away by the time he is 2 or 3. Well, we certainly didn't get a lot of good news today. The doctor said other than that, Gavin is doing great and seems very healthy. He is even up to 11.14 pounds. I am concerned about his belly-button, circumcision, and bottle-feeding. I'm probably going to put Neosporin® on his circumcision, but I hope that it will get better soon like the doctor says it will. Has anyone else had this problem? And what about his doctor's advice? And does anyone near the Riverside/Corona area have a great pediatrician they might recommend? I'm not sure if I should stick with ours. As much as we like him, I'm just starting to have a few concerns.

On another note, tomorrow is Gavin's pre-opp appointment at Loma Linda. I am feeling so emotional over the whole thing. I cry almost every time I think about it. And after receiving a wonderful email from a new cleft buddy, Joy, it became even more real. She offered great advice, but nonetheless, I cried my eyes out reading it. Having a blog has been so wonderful because it has allowed me to connect with other cleft-affected families who have already been very helpful. We met Darcy while Gavin was in the hospital for dehydration and have continued to keep in touch with her through blogs and emails. It is so nice to have people to talk to during this experience. And, both Darcy and Joy's children had the same surgeon that Gavin will have, Dr. Martin, so that is encouraging as their children are absolutely beautiful! Both moms even said I could call them or meet with them if I needed help and support through this experience since they both live locally. So thank you, ladies! You and my other new blogging friends have been a great support system!

Wish us luck with our appointment tomorrow! Here are two cute pictures taken recently:


  1. I am so sorry for what you are having to go through with the pediatrician. I would totally try to find someone new if you can. I have a great pediatrician for the kiddos, but we are in Redlands. I wouldn't mind passing on the info if you are interested.

    I would definately keep neosporin on his circ until the red gets better. Aiden's was done later then most (21 days old) and he had a problem with his healing as quickly but now has no problems. Just keep it gooped up.

    I am sorry I don't have any advice on the whole belly button hernia thing.

    Now about the bottle issue: that is just aweful that he won't give you a referral for the insurance auth. There should be no question about it since he needs to eat. Not like we are talking normal anatomy and mom just doesn't want to nurse, hello!! And even if we were talking about that, who are they to dictate how you need to feed your kiddo? What kind of bottles have you tried? Can he latch on and nurse? Have you talked to the cleft team about getting certain bottles through them? Not sure what all they can do. Aiden couldn't nurse and I know they got us a handful of Haberman bottles, but those are for total non-nursers. Sorry I am not much help. :( Hoping it all gets ironed out soon. I would try and focus your energy and Monday's surgery and fight each battle as they need to be.

    Many thoughts and prayers for you. Those pics are SO darn cute. Boys love their remotes early on!!

  2. Kelly, I have an AWESOME Pediatrician, I'll email you the information.

    I wouldn't have liked the answer your Ped gave in regards to his eating. Under normal circumstances, yeah, maybe a baby would eat, but Gavin needs to know how to adjust to a bottle since his mouth is different.

    Is Gavin's surgery still scheduled for Monday?? I'll email you my phone number. Call if you need ANYTHING! I may try and come and visit, if you don't mind! :)

    Love the pics!!!

  3. Hello ~ I am a friend of Darcy's , and wanted to give some info on docs in Riverside as well. Please, please don't take him to Dr Shafai any longer :) I will leave it at that. Dr Salazar is a wonderful ped in Riverside, very personable, not an alarmist, but very thorough. Also, please consider any amount of breastmilk that you have given your boy wonderful and perfect and just the right amount, and if you need to stop, then you need to stop. Don't beat yourself up, you have done a wonderful job. Pumping would be best, and formula is NOT your enemy ~ but if you have to bottle feed, then DO IT! You are his momma, and you have done a great job in getting him a good start with breastmilk.