This is what Shawn Morton would look like if he had been made of LEGO -- the personal website of Shawn Morton
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Wednesday, December 12, 2007
Really rough week for Maddox
Don't really know where to begin with this post other than to say that it has been a really rough week for Maddox and the rest of the family.

Maddox and me

First, Maddox has been sick for the past week with what we thought was just a cold. After a trip to the pediatrician, we found out that he had Respiratory Syncytial Virus (RSV) which is a viral infection that really hits infants hard. It causes cold-like symptoms, congestion and can easily lead to pneumonia or bronchitis. He hasn't wanted to sleep (which means Amy has had almost no sleep for the past week) and he hasn't wanted to eat.

Speaking of eating, at the same doctor's visit, we found out that Maddox has fallen way behind in terms of his weight. At his previous checkup, he was 75th percentile in weight. Now, at 6 months, he is under the 5th (yes, 5th) percentile.

This puts him in the "failure to thrive" category that requires further testing. There are a ton of disorders and diseases that could lead to failure to thrive. Many of them are very serious including cystic fibrosis, metabolic issues or malabsorption issues.

The first round of blood tests and a chest x-ray didn't really reveal anything that clued the doctor in on what is going on.

Our next steps are to see a cardiologist, a gastroenterologist and have more blood tests to check for hepatitis and a sweat test to rule out cystic fibrosis. As you can imagine, we are pretty freaked out about all of this.

Maddox in front of the tree

Today, he had to return to the pediatrician because he was really congested and was having some wheezing. Doctor told us that the RSV is the cause and that we will need to start doing breathing treatments for the next few days to make him more comfortable. He also said that the RSV could possibly affect his lungs throughout the winter and make him more susceptible to respiratory issues in the next few months.

Normally, I would consider this to be about the worst week we could imagine; however, we got more news at a visit to a plastic surgeon. We had noticed that Maddox' head was misshapen. This isn't uncommon with infants; however, his seemed to be pretty severe. Turns out that our suspicions were correct and that he has a severe case of plagiocephaly (which is basically a fancy way to say that his skull is misshapen).

Treatment will require the use of a special molding helmet that will be used to reshape his head over the next few months. It will start out as just a couple of hours per day, but quickly becomes something that he will wear 22 hours per day.

He was fitted for the helmet yesterday and we got to pay the first $325 (of the $1200+). Should have the helmet in a few weeks.

So, if you were wondering why I have been a little off over the past few days, now you know :) I generally don't like to bother other people with our problems; however, I felt like I had to get this off my chest. Those of you with kids know that there is absolutely nothing worse than when your kids are sick.

Whether you believe in prayers, positive vibes, good thoughts or happy little trees (yeah, I'm down with Bob Ross), please send a few our way if you get a chance.

About Shawn Morton

Married father of 6; VP of Social Media at JPMorgan Chase; gluten-free; gadget enthusiast; hair metal aficionado; #Movember man View more on LinkedIn.