First a little history….
When Alex was still in Korea, we received an update from our agency that Alex had an irritated belly button and had gone to the doctor. They sent us a few updated pictures then – and one showing a reddish bellybutton. While we were concerned, we knew he was being well cared for. After Alex came home to Canada and we took him to our family doctor, we were told that his “proud flesh” had never healed so the doctor put on some silver nitrate which normally seals off the belly button. We did this 3 times. But it never healed!
For the most part the redness (which looks a bit like the red inside your mouth) wasn’t causing any issues – occasionally it would be a little yucky… and bleed. Now that Alex is able to communicate more, he has been telling us it sometimes hurts. And he is always fingering his belly area… So… at his 5 year checkup, I asked again about his belly button. The doctor wasn’t sure what the best move would be, so he referred us to a surgeon.
Matt took Alex to the surgeon for his first appointment, so I am not 100% sure what was said – but the surgeon mentioned before she decided upon a course of action, she wanted an ultrasound. I guess there is a sort of connection between the belly button and your bladder and she wanted to ensure that there was no mass on it. When we went for the ultrasound – Alex wasn’t able to eat or drink anything… and his appointment was for 10:45… not an easy time as any parent can imagine. He cried and whined for food and drink the whole time there. Then the appointment lasted an hour. First an ultrasound tech, then the supervisor, then he left, then he came back, then he left, and came back again. So as you can imagine, I was a little concerned.
Two week later I took Alex back for a follow up. Turns out it is a tumor – but not any sort of worrisome tumor – completely benign. It is a small mass of blood vessels inside his belly button – and when it gets rubbed too much, some blood vessels can bleed… hence his discomfort and discharge. It does not continue through to that connection with his bladder which is a relief.
The solution is to have a short surgical procedure where they will put him under and remove the mass. Many parents wait until the child is closer to 10 years old, but since Alex will be playing hockey this year, we don’t want his equipment rubbing on it and causing him any distress. No dates set yet – but hopefully in the next couple of months.
So there it is! That’s where we are with the belly button saga. Will keep everyone up to date!