Friday, July 31, 2009

Cali's hemangioma

As you may know, or have noticed from her photos, Cali was born with a puffy, bluish spot along her left cheek bone. It was small but noticeable at birth. We were directed to a pediatric dermatologist who named the spot an "hemangioma" (pronounced he-MAN-gee-oh-ma). Essentially, it is a grouping of enlarged blood vessels buried deep in her skin, hence the blue tint. The cause of hemangiomas is unknown, and treatment is sketchy.

We were told to "wait it out," since most hemangiomas go away by ages 5 to 9 (gasp). Like we wanted to wait a decade, but our only other treatment options were primitive, and surgery isn't an option until she's at least 4 and it may cause a lot of scarring.

The hemangioma has grown along with Cali's own growth pattern, as the doctor predicted. She's in a high-growth phase, so we haven't been surprised at its swelling.

But yesterday Cali woke up fussy and lethargic, not her usual happy self. She took a 4-hour nap, and when I finally woke her up, I was alarmed to see that her hemangioma had doubled in size, turned reddish purple, and become hard and rubbery. We made a few emergency appointments today, including another thorough exam and hospital monitoring.

We have decided to begin Cali on a low dose of medication that the doctor believes will shrink her hemangioma. We were very hesitant at first, but now we feel good about it. We don't want this growth to disfigure our little girl's face, and certainly not to the point that it obstructs her breathing or other facial functions.

She is such a sweet little girl and we want what is best for her. We just wanted you, our family and friends, to be aware of the situation. Our love to you all. Pictures below.


Blogger Monica said...

I hope everything goes well with the medication. She's still pretty darn cute!

6:08 AM  
Blogger Mrs. Dub said...

Eden had a red hemangioma on her lip, but it never caused problems and faded by two. So I'm sad to hear that Cali's is causing such a ruckus. We'll be sending prayers and good vibes your way. But as you know, she's still adorable!

6:40 AM  
Blogger Cecilia Parma said...

Poor baby... don't listen to the other people, she's adorable! I hope the meds help. Tell Bria to give her lots of kisses - maybe they'll help :-)

8:56 PM  
Blogger bloggingchristy said...

Poor Cali! She is so sweet! Your pics form your vacation are so pretty. I'm glad you guys had such a fun time! Let us know if you need anything!

8:43 PM  

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