Tuesday, January 31, 2006

Our visit with Genetics

We made the trip up to UCLA yesterday to have Jenelle seen by the Genetics Department. Our first consultation was great, and much better than I anticipated. We spent over an hour just giving information about our medical and family history. Jenelle was quite the charmer as usual, and they all agreed she was very cute. (I’m biased of course!)

They took some blood and will be testing her thyroid levels and for a genetic disorder called Rhett’s Syndrome. From my own research on the Internet, I found that Rhett’s Syndrome is caused by a genetic mutation error that typically affects only girls who begin to develop normally but then suddenly regress to the point of losing skills such as walking, talking and eating. Some of the typical characteristics of a girl with Rhett’s are one with attractive features, uncontrolled seizures, and they do not use their hands. Jenelle does not fit the profile of the “typical” girl with Rhett’s Syndrome, but they are finding as they test more kids like Jenelle that there is a type of “atypical” form of Rhett’s that would fit Jenelle’s characteristics. It is something we have suspected for a while, but never actually tested. We will have those results in 4 weeks. We go back on Thursday to see Dr. Shields for a routine follow up and should have the thyroid results at that time. If the test for Rhett's is negative, we may consider getting a muscle biopsy to rule out mitochondrial disease.

I’ll update again once we have some test results. Thanks for the continued prayers and positive thoughts!


Kami said...

Sending positive thoughts your way! ((HUGS))

Anonymous said...

My oldest daughter Taylor is currently being tested for Angelman's & Rhett's Syndromes. She was tested when she was 4-5 years old for Prader Willi, but the test came back negative. Good luck with the results. We should know Taylor's results in about 2 weeks.

Tara (Heather's friend) said...

Sorry the above note was from me.

Naomi said...

You weren't anywhere near the ENT or radiology departments on your visit to UCLA where you? They're in building 200 5th floor and 1st floor.

I was there with Callum on Monday as well from about 9am - 1pm and passed a little girl that I thought looked like Janelle!

Kelly said...

Why yes we were in the 200 building right around 1:00! Our appointment was on the 2nd floor, and then around 4:00 we were in the lab on the 1st floor for an hour! I wonder if it was us - next time, stop me - we should definitely try to meet sometime!