Thursday, May 17, 2007

Who needs two anyway?

Kidneys, that is. We finally know that Henry only has one.

In case you don't know the backstory, here's the catch-up: We've known that Henry's right kidney was atrophic (aka, tiny and underdeveloped) for a while. (I did have about 40 ultrasounds, you know.) At about 3 weeks of age we did a renal ultrasound, which confirmed a small right kidney that didn't look functional.

Today was the Mag-3 renal scan, which is a nuclear medicine study that can be used to evaluate kidney function. It showed what I was expecting, absolutely no function on the right side. Another renal ultrasound was also done, which showed that the right nubbin was smaller, but the left kidney is growing bigger than average to compensate. That's actually a good thing. His total renal function (measured by BUN and Creatinine blood tests) is also totally normal.

So what does this mean for Henry? Not a whole lot, except he needs to avoid NSAIDs (like Motrin or Aleve), he'll have yearly checkups on his blood pressure and probably repeat renal ultrasounds to check on the left kidney. And if he wants to play contact sports, he'll need a special super-expensive custom molded kidney protector. If only we didn't have that ultrasound in our office, we could have gone on blissfully ignorant of this. Lots of people walk around with one kidney their whole lives and never know it until they get radiologic studies for some other reason and happen to find it.

It certainly isn't keeping him from growing.

Sorry no pictures today, just talk.