Wednesday, December 20, 2006

On Hospitals

*from my other blog at Dilla Speaks Out

It’s just that we have been in and out of hospitals too many times this past two months. And I am getting a little freakish about it. The patients? There has been a few.

Patient 1: My mom

My mommy has been complaining about having a difficult time hearing these past few months so ZZ insisted that she goes over to see the consultant ENT for check up. True enough, after some tests, it was discovered that she has lost 60% of her left hearing. At 57 years old, that was not normal. So, she had to follow-up with an MRI just to be sure. The session was rather a daunting one and mommy was accompanied by ZZ, Illa and yours truly. She had to do the MRI scan twice, once with the dye injected to her bloodstream. We knew that it was not a good sign immediately coz we were told that the dye would only be injected if they suspected something was wrong with her. It turns out that mom has acoustic neuroma , a benign (meaning : not cancerous, alhamdulillah) tumor which is slowly growing in her inner ear. The tumor is now 1.5cm in size and it is slowly encroaching into her brain and is sitting on her hearing nerves. That was the true root cause of her hearing loss. Next, a series of consultation with many many specialists ensued. We were kind of overwhelmed by all the information and I couldn’t particularly process the magnitude of it all at once.

There were basically 3 options at hand: 1. Do nothing. Just monitor the growth of the tumor, ie periodic MRIs to ensure that it is not getting TOO big. In the end, when it does get too big, we’d still have to remove it. However, there might also be other consequences as the tumor is sitting very near to the facial and balance nerves as well. 2. Removal. Go in there and get it out. Finito. There are basically 2 ways to go about it - through the ears or through the skull. Either way they are major surgeries, one that would take at least 12 hours and however you try to word it, it was a scary option for me. 3. Radiosurgery. It involves focused radiation to stunt the growth of the tumor. We were interested with the CyberKnife program in which mom had to come for imaging, both CT and MRI,and then the doctors will do the planning on dosage etc. Mom would only have to go to the place 3 times for the treatment, averaging about 1 hour each time. She didn’t even have to admit herself as it is considered as outpatient treatment. So, she has already booked for an appointment early January 2007.

In a way, I was very pleased that we actually met with a few consultants from different fields. We got the chance to gather enough info to make the right decision for mom. The consultants seem to recommend treatment that is related only to their specialty and not every consultant is familiar with what treatment is available in the whole of Malaysia, you know. Eg, the CyberKnifeis a part of Radiosurgery but there are other methods too such asGammaKnife, XKnife etc. Each procedure is different , some is more technically advanced than others. Imagine if we didn’t know about this CyberKnife thingy, mom would have to fix a metal frame on her face for one of the procedures. Nasib baik, kan? I do think the support from her children, in laws and husband were vital in maintaining her positive attitude and made it that much easier for her and us to accept what has actually happened. I just pray that the treatment would go well for her and in the meantime, I promise to be super nice to her. ;)

Patient 2: Khaleeq

Khaleeq has been getting nose bleed since he was small and occasionally waking up to a pool of dried blood beside him has been quite a normal sight. In this one particular incident however, he was bleeding quite a lot and it didn’t seem that it was about to stop. So, we rushed him over to our panel clinic and got a referral letter to check him out with the paed. Well anywho, it happens that the pead we chose in Pantai was also a neurologist. So, we casually mentioned that Khaleeq is also a little slow in the speech development as he is not actually talking just yet. It’s not that he doeesn’t speak at all. Ada la sikit sikit.. Lately ni, he’s been saying "Oh No!!!" Complete with his hands on his ears. She diagnosed him to have the expressive availability of 18mths and understanding ability of 24mths. That’s a little behind his real age of 28mths. She told us that there are 5 reasons why kids actually talk later than they should. 1 - Deafness, 2 - Deprived / Understimulation 3 -Dysphasic (Impairment of speech and verbal comprehension, especially when associated with brain injury) 4 - Mental retardation 5 - Autistic. Khaleeq is free from cause 3, 4 and 5. So, we only have to be weary of cause 1 and 2.


This is Khaleeq at the Audiologist’s place. He had to undergo the play audiometry and later the sleep test to check his middle ear function. It turned out that nothing is wrong with him. So, that strikes out cause number 1.

Well that leaves us with cause number 2 to be concerned with. The good doc prescribed a change in diet — more complex carbohydrate (wholemeal bread etc), less sugar and chocolate; less TV (yup, believe you me!), more one-on-one interaction and it would do him good if he was enrolled in a playgroup. I guess, there is less excitement in taking care of Number Two. He’s basically screaming for attention and I have been too lazy to give it. I should have known better, I am a Number Two myself! So, on my part: No more TV for the kids once I get back home and there will definitely be more one-on-one interaction with my dear Khaleeq.Kesian anak aku.. Oh yes, and he’ll be going to Khadra’s school next year! :) My parents cakap, "Biarla.. He’ll speak when he’s ready.. " I think so too.. but going to school would really help speed it up.

Patient 3: Hubby

Following my mom’s footstep, Azrul went to see the ENT to check out the nagging problem he has been having with his ears and nose. So, did up the CT scan etc and it turned out that there was nothing wrong with him. Case closed. :)

Patient 4: Yours truly

Not wanting to be left out, I jumped on the bandwagon of meeting up the consultant ENT. After my initial CT scan, the doc told me there was some indication of blockage of my sinuses which may have resulted in my previous headaches and my morning sokseks. I have a terrible case of sokseks that I have been living with all my life. Every single morning I would be sniffling , my ears and nose will get blocked, I’d let out a disgusting noise and whatever consistency of mucus that is clogging my nose. Not a very pretty sight. Lately, add the headaches that I have been getting on my fore and behind my head. (?) Whatever. Basically, it is very annoying. So, I do agree with the specialist that I do have a problem. The solution? He would open up my sinus opening and that would make better drainage for the mucus. He then put me on a Steroid Challenge to see what the effects would be after I get the operation done. After three days on the steroid, I suffered fom massive frontal headaches complete with vomitting. I called up the ENT and he asked me to cut down on the steroids pronto. On my next follow-up session, we scheduled for my operation to be on the 27th of December 2006. We also took some blood for a complete work and a chest X-ray as well seeing that I have an underlying asthma condition. Anyways, I will be doing the FESS (functional endoscopic sinus surgery) and the septoplasty. I did ask the good doctor if rhinoplasty (buat hidung daa - ni Nip/Tuck la yang ajar) is also on the table. (kidding only..)

How am I feeling at the moment? Pretty mixed up, I guess. Fear for one, relieved that I am finally getting it done and that it is not something worse, restless, anticipating the unknown and mainly afraid of what is to come. Still got a lot of reading to do on the procedures and stuff. I will catch you later, then.

-dillz blogging out-

Friday, December 15, 2006

Happiest Feet

*from my other blog at Dilla Speaks Out

Hfkhadra Hfkhaleeq Happyfeet

One movie preview. One night filled with fun, fun, fun.. The happiest feet were the tiny ones; belonging to Khadra, Khaleeq, Naqib, Teyta and Aisya. [At least whilst they were still awake.. Khaleeq slept 20 minutes into the movie and Khadra slept at the end of the movie. All other kids were wide awake.. Baik pulak anak-anak aku.. heh heh heh] Thank you, Thank you, Thank you X-Fresh! :) (Moga-moga, dapatla tiket lagi di lain kali. Amiiin!)

The preview started at 9pm, but prior to that we had to undergo a strict security measure. Seeing that it was, after all, a PREVIEW; we had to deposit :

-all handphones (regardless of the camera function in it. Even your old granny phones had to be declared)

-all cameras (be it the digital type or otherwise)

-all other electronic devices

After that, we we subjected to a metal detector screening- You know the magic wand that can detect metal? That one.. – Adakah POYO? heh heh heh

I think that’s quite a good treatment for people who just don’t get it.. Please understand that previews are not avenues to cilok someone else’s movie and get it to the cetak rompak scene faster. Thank you very much.

-dillz blogging out-

Sunday, December 10, 2006

Bye Bye Baby!

*from my other blog at Dilla Speaks Out


She’s the first car we got as a unit. Our very first baby, bought in January 2003. Sedih la pulak..

We said goodbye to our CR-V a few weeks back as a matter of a strategic move. Azrul is anticipating a major price cut in second hand value once the new CR-V in in town. So we figured we’d better get rid of it while it could still fetch an acceptable price. We’ve been going around in my MyVi most of the time, backed up with the company car.

Anywho, we made a booking at the local Toyota dealer for the new Camry. God knows how long that’ll take…

-dillz blogging out-

Friday, December 08, 2006

Presenting Our Latest Addition

*from my other blog at Dilla Speaks Out


Here she is. Fresh out of the oven. The latest addition to the Zaghlol clan — grandchild Number 8 :Heleyna Zahra Mohd Nazrin. Well, I think it is coz the name isn’t registered with the Jabatan Pendaftaran Negara as yet. She was born on December 1st, 2006 at about 2:42pm. I didn’t really look at the clock in the delivery suite as I was busy manning the videocam. Mom, Nazz, me and Illa were there to witness the birth of baby Heleyna.

ZZ has been in the ward since the wee hours in the morning, I think she was admitted at 1.30am. Imagine the wait and pain until God knows what time… Hmmm… Historically, ZZ had the epidural with the first boy and went without it for the second girl. Epidural or no epidural? - that is the question. I guess, we all go into the delivery suite wanting to do it au naturel — without the help and magic of pain relievers. Baru ada feel sikit, kan? Imagine our moms and grandmamas who delivered us and our moms — they could do it without all this epidural, pethidene, laughing gas business, right? Well, that’s all well and good, for them.. With the advancement of technology and the availability of numerous pain relievers, going into labour is not as easy as it used to be. There is so many decisions and you don’t know whether it is the right one or the wrong one. The truth of the matter is,there’s no one right or wrong way of doing it. It’s just the right one at the time, and it’ll be a different case for every delivery. I guess, the turn of events will finally decide on which pain reliever you’ll opt for or the lack of it. Just remember that it doesn’t make you a bad mom for wanting to feel less pain.

Anyways, sometime midday, ZZ opted for the epidural. Might as well get some sleep, I’d say. I remember during Khadra’s delivery I was soo glad when I finally took the epidural. Azrul would recall this exact moment when I actually said, "Yeay! Boleh tidur" and slept I did until it was finally time. The only immediate downside to this epidural thing is the side effect that both me and ZZ get from taking it. My hands would shake noticeably up to a point that I was afraid to hold my newborn child for long. ZZ was shaking near the end and even more so when the dosage was stopped. Anyways, I think epidural is still well worth it though if you can’t stand the pain anymore. Just bring in an extra cardigan and a loving body who’d rub your hands into the delivey suite. You’d do fine. :)

-dillz blogging out-