July 19th 2014, Laurel's 3rd Birthday Party

Sometime around June 20, 2014 Elliott developed what we thought was a cold. After a few days we grew concerned and took him to the doctor's office. He was diagnosed with bronchiolitis and began breathing treatments. We returned to the doctor when he did not respond to the treatments. He had an x-ray to rule out pneumonia and the possibility that he swallowed something that was now lodged in his airway. The x-ray report indicated that he had an enlarged thymus. We were told to have another x-ray in two weeks to verify that this resolved itself. By the 2nd week in July we had been to the doctor's office several times. There were some small changes to Elliott's medicine, but the diagnosis stayed the same.

Elliott began to doing much better. Kyllan and I were relived. By Laurel's birthday party on July 19th he sounded the best he had in a month. By the 22 he sounded his worst. On the 22nd he also had his followup chest x-ray. That evening Kyllan and I decided we wanted to see the doctor as soon as possible. I called first thing on the 23rd, but was told there were no appointments available that day. I decided to call the nurse directly once I got into my office and got a few things in order. A few minutes after I arrived at my office I received a call from the same doctor's office. I thought, "wow, the nurse saw that I called about an appointment and called back." It was his doctor. She told me that the x-rays had come in and that this time the report indicated an enlarged heart. The office had already made an appointment for Elliott with a pediatric cardiologist. I needed to take him immediately.

Kyllan met me in the parking lot of Las Colinas Medical Center, where I was picking up Elliott's x-rays, and we took Elliott to the pediatric cardiologist for an electrocardiogram. The Doctor told us their was a mass on his heart and that the mass was half the size of his heart. This mass was what appeared on both x-rays. He literally walked us down to the pediatric emergency department and had us sent straight to the Congenital Heart Surgery Unit, a cardiac ICU. A CT was scheduled for the 24th. At worst, we were prepared for heart surgery to remove the mass.  Minutes before the CT was to take place the pediatric intensivist came in the room and abruptly said, "we are not doing the CT". He told us a hematologist would be over to see us in a few minutes. A few hours later, on his sister Laurel's 3rd birthday, 14 month old Elliott was diagnosed with leukemia.  We now know that the mass was a tumor that has been pressing against his heart and impeding his ability to breath.

This blog is the story of his recovery.