Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Little Lungs

When Kaylee was a baby she was terrified whenever I did PFTs at clinic. I can’t say I blamed her! I would take a deep breath and then blow so hard my face turn bright red and my eyes bug out. Then the machine would beep and I would start the whole process again. My clinic tried everything to ease her fears, but the kid just cried and screamed every time I did PFTs no matter how much prep, letting her try to do them herself, explaining, cheering, etc that happened during my PFTs.
Eventually I got my own PFT machine for home. I am not sure it helped ease the fear of the clinics PFT machine, but my home machine grew on her. Every time I did home PFTs she did too. It was cute to see her scored. Her FEV1 (how much air you can blow in the first second of a forceful exhale) sat around .60 when she started. Her little lungs not having much to blow out at all let alone in one second. We would always look at the machine and comment how our lungs were so happy (even when my scores revealed lungs that were anything, but happy).
Yesterday, I was taking my daily PFT while she was in the room. “I want a turn,” she shouted the second she saw me grab my machine. After taking my three values I handed the PFT machine over to her. It had been a while since she had taken her FEV1 and she was excited to try that PFT machine again. After she blew she handed the machine to me, “How happy are my lungs?” she asked as she always does. I looked at my meter and was shocked! “Try it again,” I said, not believing what I was reading. She blew again producing the same score.
Cystic Fibrosis disease progression has rendered my lungs so damaged that my 4 year old can officially blow more out of her little lungs in one second than I can! Sobering to say the least. On the bright side, my FVC (total lung volume) is still higher than hers so I do have that going for me!

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