I'm afraid Friday's swallow study brought bad news--Baby W is aspirating his liquids :(
The SLP working on the study tried him at different thicknesses and nipple flows and found what works for him. She said he aspirates about thirty swallows in but even a little could be bad if it gets all the way down to his lungs. He doesn't really even react when it goes in his airways--no coughing or choking. She wasn't sure if the throat clearing is related (and he's still doing it, even with the thickened milk) but its the "odd" symptom that prompted me to contact his doctor. My pump and I are becoming good friends (not really, I hate you pump!) and we are working on getting a script for the thickener he needs (the dr's office put in a script for some gel stuff that has a big warning label on the box to NOT use it for infants under twelve months instead of a script for the powder the SLP at the hospital taught me about. The office was closed when I went to pick up the script so we put the order on hold until I can contact them Monday and see if they will change it). At the moment, we are using rice cereal and oh my does he need a lot of it. TEN teaspoons for every four ounces. His liquids have to be the consistency of honey through a medium flow nipple.