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  • 5 Year Old to have an Echo - What should I tell he...

    [5 Year Old to have an Echo - What should I tell her?]

    Author: Amy Nierman (---.tnt1.seymour.in.da.uu.net)

    Date: 08-22-02 22:22

    After talking with the pediatric cardiologist who will be seeing my 18 month old son with HCM, he wants to do an echo on my daughter. What should I tell her? What if she asks why? What if she has it, what do we tell he then? Any suggestions would be appreciated.

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    [Re: 5 Year Old to have an Echo - What should I tell her?]

    Author: Sarah B--Board Moderator (---.client.attbi.com)

    Date: 08-22-02 22:46

    Dear Amy

    Being honest with her within her ability to understand is best. I think for a 5 year old, you can tell her that she is getting a special check up for her heart. It may be scary for her to see her heart on the screen as that is pretty young, but they can turn the machine so she won't see the screen if you think it would freak her out.

    I wouldn't worry about what to tell her if she has HCM until you know. If she does, then I suggest you call LIsa and set up an appointment with her and with the counselor that the HCMA works with.

    good luck

    Sarah

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    [Re: 5 Year Old to have an Echo - What should I tell her?]

    Author: Reenie Smith (---.snbrca.adelphia.net)

    Date: 08-22-02 23:14

    I would tell her that they are going to show her heart to her on tv. That worked with my kids. They were screened when my youngest was almost 5. He didn't freak out and thought it was cool.

    Did she get to go to any ultrasounds when you were pregnant with your son? It's basically the same thing. Just tell her that they want to make sure that everything is how it's supposed to be.

    If she does indeed have HCM, you can talk to her about it. Be sure she knows that she's special. But a couple of pediatric cardiologists I have talked to say that unless there are special circumstances, like symptoms that cannot be ignored, they rarely restrict kids from normal play and activity. I hope this helps relieve you a little.

    By the way, so far my kids have screened clear, but they will be screened sometime again soon. Waiting for authorization from insurance as we speak. Good luck!!!! And keep us posted!

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    [Re: 5 Year Old to have an Echo - What should I tell her?]

    Author: Sonja (203.32.169.---)

    Date: 08-23-02 01:02

    Amy

    We took our 6 year old son for an Echo yesterday. He got quite worried while we were waiting for his appointment. We asked the Doctor if she could do it on his father so that he could see what was going to happen. Bryce felt a lot better after seeing what was involved. We also explained to him what he was looking at on the screen and how amazing it was that they could see it all. After a couple of minutes he was chatting to the Doctor while she was doing it. Hope this helps.

    Thankfully, Bryce was given the 'all clear'. Best of Luck.

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    [Re: 5 Year Old to have an Echo - What should I tell her?]

    Author: Nicole (---.dsl.snfc21.pacbell.net)

    Date: 08-23-02 13:08

    My 6 year old son was diagnosed when he was 4 months old and has had Echos at least every 6 months (sometimes more) since then. I just talked to him about what advice he would give someone his age and he said "it is like putting sunscreen on but you don't have to touch it with your hands." He also said it feels like a chest massage. He is really interested in the equipment and likes to pretend that he is looking at outer space. He says "don't be scared and ask for a sticker when you are done."

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    [Re: 5 Year Old to have an Echo - What should I tell her?]

    Author: Sarah B--Board Moderator (---.client.attbi.com)

    Date: 08-23-02 13:29

    Dear Nicole

    It sounds like you have a GREAT kid. Thanks for posting his advice --brought a big smile to my face.

    take care

    Sarah

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    [Re: 5 Year Old to have an Echo - What should I tell her?]

    Author: Lisa Salberg (---.dyn.optonline.net)

    Date: 08-23-02 18:12

    Nicole _ what wonderful advice from your very sweet son! How wonderful that he is helping support others WOW I never would have thought that the HCMA would have reached the 5-6 year olds in such a powerful way...Send me an email with your sons name and address... I want to send him a little special gift ([email protected])

    Amy - Honesty...with a little motherly protection is what I suggest, Becca, who is now 7 has had a fetal echo, 8 months - 2 years old, 4 years old and 6 years old. Yes...I am a little over kill but at the 4 and 6 year old screenings she had told me things like her heart hurt and it was going to fast....SSSSOOOO of to the cardiologist...and ALL WAS NORMAL. She was just feeling normal growth and too much candy/caffine most likely. She will be screened again in about 2 years at age 9 or so.

    Each time she is told we need to check your "sweet heart" and she smiles. This last one she was a little more aware of concept that heart problems "run in the family". This was because I had had my ICD replaced in April - my dad had a pacer in May...then replaced it with an ICD in September...her screening was in November. So she asked "what are they looking for mommy?" I tried to explain but she looked at me like I had 3 heads...so I said sometimes your heart can be silly and grow a little different then other peoples and this can sometimes cause problems that you may need medicine for. Then in the words of a 6 year old girl she said " oh you have to see if I have a silly heart or a regular old heart?"...I simply agreed and she was happy with that.

    YOu know your child....use your best judgement and be as honest as you can.

    Best to all!

    Lisa

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    [Re: 5 Year Old to have an Echo - What should I tell her?]

    Author: Amy Nierman (---.tnt4.seymour.in.da.uu.net)

    Date: 08-23-02 23:47

    Thanks for sharing your ideas. I'll definately remember the sunscreen part. Nicole, tell your son thanks.

    It just so happens that the day of the echo is also school picture day. I need to talk to the teacher to see if her class might be getting their pictures taken before she would have to leave. If they are, I thought I could try to tie the school picture and a movie picture of her heart together in some way. I'm still working on the answer for "why". I agree I need to be honest, but I also don't want her to worry.

    I'm going to try to get a hold of the teacher this weekend. The week days are too hectic with work and trying to get everyone to bed on time. I wanted to let the teacher know what was going on anyway. Kids have an tremendous ability to pick up on anything that's a little bit different. The more the teacher knows about what's going on at home, the better she'll be able to help my daughter at school.

    Thanks for the help,

    Amy

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    [Re: 5 Year Old to have an Echo - What should I tell her?]

    Author: Sarah B--Board Moderator (---.client.attbi.com)

    Date: 08-24-02 01:26

    Dear Amy

    I think if you focus on the "making sure everything is ok" part instead of "looking for bad things" part, it will be be better for both of you.

    and good luck and let us know how it goes.

    Sarah

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    [Re: 5 Year Old to have an Echo - What should I tell her?]

    Author: Lisa Salberg (---.dyn.optonline.net)

    Date: 08-24-02 09:21

    Sarah - Yes and No...if too much effort is on the "we want to make sure your OK" part...if something shows up then a child may feel that they displeased you or did something wrong if something is not OK.

    Just a thought..

    Lisa

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    [Re: 5 Year Old to have an Echo - What should I tell her?]

    Author: shelva (---.proxy.aol.com)

    Date: 08-31-02 17:46

    Hi. I don't know if I am too late or not, whether your child had the echo already. I recently had a baby with HCM who died @ 8 days old DOB 8/8/02) So when I went to have my son tested, I was very nervous that he would be afrraid he was going to die. SO I told him it was a "kindergarten screening test" that he had to take to get into kindergarten. I don't know if your child is in school this year or not, but it worked for Eli. We basically just told him they were looking at his insides to be sure he was a big boy for kindergarten, and he bought it. Of course we let the techs in on the plan, and they were great with him. Good luck in all with your children...Trilby Henderson, Wheeling WV

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    [Re: 5 Year Old to have an Echo - What should I tell her?]

    Author: Amy Nierman (---.tnt2.seymour.in.da.uu.net)

    Date: 08-31-02 22:15

    That's a great idea! She actually just started kingergarten and they got their listening ears tested this past week. We've got another week before she goes, but I might be able to tie that together. The key would be though if she knew the other kids wouldn't be getting that test, but I think I could work that one out. She knows that I always do what's best for her, for example the poor kid still has a booster seat. Every once in a while she complains that none of the other kids have one, but I always say that sitting in her booster seat is the safest place she can be because it makes the seat belt fit better and besides that she can see out the windows better. So if she would ask about the other kids getting the echo, I could tie it in with the booster seat.

    I also wanted to say I'm sorry for you loss. I can't imagine what you and your family must be going through. You are in my thoughts. I appreciate you sharing your experience, especially at this difficult time, it's a wonderful idea.

    Thanks again,

    Amy Nierman
    NOTE: This is a post from the previous forum message board.

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