Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Late effects of viruses and cancer

Okay, so the virus was defeated. That does not mean that there is not other funkiness going on around the Dungan household. Some of which is benign (or relatively) and some of which seems less so. The seemingly easy part is Ainsley's ear infection. It appears that Ainsley was able to triumph over the virus but not without the snot leaving its mark on her. It appears that she has developed a grade A ear infection. Now, this has not been officially diagnosed and I personally have not been apart of the decision making process (I had a board meeting last night which kept me from the discovery) but I have been informed that the girls did come to this decision. I would also like to point out that I am a smart man, having fast experience of being outnumbered by 3 females. I know that if even I have not seen the ear infection with my own eyes it must be absolute truth if the girls think that is the case. Therefore, Ainsley must have an ear infection.

The worse and more ominous occurrence has to do with Sydney. Thankfully it has less to do with our most recent scare (the arm that continues to plague by waking and sleeping hours) and more to do with late effects of her treatment. It appears that one of her new adult teeth is, in fact, loose. To our knowledge she has not bumped it or jarred it. It would be one thing if this had happened to a baby tooth or injury but it is clearly unrelated to either. We have hoped that this was some mad fluke but are coming to realize that this is probably just the beginning of some young dentists career of work.

The unfortunate part of treatment that many are unaware of in kiddos is the damage that all of the chemotherapy does to teeth. The is especially present in children with neuroblastoma because of the timing of the disease. The average age at diagnosis is two and, unfortunately, this is also the time that "seedling" adult teeth are just starting to take root. The drugs seem to take their toll on these teeth and by the time they reach the surface they are often deformed or non-existent. This leads to a lifetime of dental work. Of course, like hearing loss, this is another side effect from treatment that receives little, if any, financial support from the health insurance company. Instead, it becomes a reason to take a second mortgage out on the house. So, bottom-line, Sydney has a wiggly adult tooth and we will need to get her to the dentist so that he can make his next monthly Mercedes payment. Unfortunately this is an important week of testing for Sydney at school and we will need to carefully coordinate that.

The purpose coaster rides on.

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